Five Beverages That Can Detract From Your Dental Health
It's not just sugary foods like candy and gum that can be damaging to the health of your teeth. The beverages you choose to drink have just as significant an impact on your dental health as the foods you eat.
If you want the healthiest possible teeth, you should know which beverages can cause severe damage if you consume them too often. The following are five of the worst beverages when it comes to maintaining healthy teeth:
It is very unfortunate that soda has become such a familiar beverage standby. Soda is so widely available and popular that most of us don't think twice about ordering a cup of cola along with a meal or even to quench our thirst.
However, the high sugar content of sodas can wreak havoc on the health of the teeth and facilitate the development of cavities. Sugar content is not the only reason why soda damages the teeth. Soda is acidic, and acidic beverages can cause the enamel of the teeth to wear away over time. This leaves teeth unprotected against cavity development.
Fruit juices — especially those that contain high fructose corn syrup
Like soda, fruit juices can damage the teeth in two ways. They contain a lot of sugar and they are highly acidic, so they contribute to both enamel erosion and tooth decay.
Many fruit juices on the shelves at your grocery store contain not only pure fruit juices, but also high fructose corn syrup for added sweetening. High fructose corn syrup is even worse than pure sugar for your teeth. High fructose corn syrup can cause the fructose levels in the blood to fluctuate in such a way that minerals that are known for strengthening teeth are depleted from the body.
Some alcoholic beverages have low sugar content, but all alcoholic beverages are bad for your teeth. Even if an alcoholic beverage has no sugar, it still can dehydrate you and reduce saliva production in your mouth.
This is bad news for your teeth because saliva in your mouth replenishes your teeth with minerals and prevents tooth decay by strengthening your enamel.
Like sodas, energy drinks that are popular for athletes contain a lot of sugar and acidic ingredients. Pure water is probably the best thing to consume after a heavy workout if you're looking to optimize the health of your teeth.
Like many of the beverages mentioned above, coffee is acidic and can damage your enamel over time. Another downside of coffee consumption is that black coffee can stain your teeth if you regularly consume it over a long period of time.
For more tips about which drinks to avoid, speak with your general dentist.