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The Sweet Spot: The Link Between Sugary Beverages And Dental Caries

Carbonated beverages are perhaps one of the most popular beverages being consumed by many people regularly. The sensation of enjoying a can of soda on a hot summer day can be extremely satisfying. Due to recent revelations about the high sugar content in regular sodas, people are opting for the ‘diet’ variations, those that are sweetened by artificial sweetener, thinking that those are “healthier” alternatives. However, most people do not realize that regular consumption of sodas, regular and diet, can have an adverse impact on our teeth.

A recent study published by the Journal of Public Health Dentistry found that carbonated beverages, or sodas, and fruit drinks are the 2 main factors causing tooth decays and dental erosions among children and adults. The study conclusively stated that severe cases of dental erosions were among people who drank sugary beverages and fruit juices regularly. Fruit drinks and juices sold in stores are usually processed and contain a high amount of sugar thus making them an agent causing tooth decay as well.

The finding should not come as a surprise to many because we are aware that foods with high sugar content and high acidity levels are harmful to our teeth. Acid corrodes the enamel, the outermost layer of our teeth and exposes the sensitive dentine area. As a result, the eroded teeth become more susceptible to dental caries. Cavity-causing bacteria will start to colonize in the exposed areas on our teeth and cause further deterioration.

Furthermore, dental erosions are exacerbated by poor dental hygiene and the absence of proper dental care. Practicing a good oral hygiene routine includes brushing and flossing daily and using mouthwash is a good first step to minimizing the risk of dental erosions. Regular dental check-ups are the best way to prevent further dental erosions as dentists will be able to assess the overall dental health. They will also recommend appropriate oral maintenance practices to help combat dental caries. 

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