What Effect Does Soda Have on the Teeth?

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So, just how bad is drinking soda for your teeth? Drinking a soda, albeit regular or diet, isn't what causes damage, but the bacteria in your mouth create harmful acids that can erode the enamel that protects your teeth. Soda consumption is one of the leading causes of tooth decay in this country. It has also been linked to health issues, such as obesity and diabetes. Read on to learn more from the dental team at LANCO Dental Care, and what patients in Lancaster, PA should know about the correlation between soda and cavities and what they should do to protect their smile.

Does soda ruin your teeth?

It is no surprise that soda is a popular drink choice among Americans and currently one of the leading causes of cavities among children and adults. Even diet sodas are not necessarily better for your teeth, even though less in calories. Most carbonated beverages contain caffeine and other acidic agents, which are culprits that cause cavities. It starts a harmful reaction of acid attacking your teeth that can last for 20 – 30 minutes. If you sip soda all day, your tooth enamel is under contact attack. Tips to lessen the effect of soda on teeth are:

  • Drink soda in moderation (no more than 12 oz. a day)
  • Use a straw to keep soda away from your teeth
  • Don't let sugar linger on your teeth, so swish with water when done
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day
  • Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and floss regularly
  • Attend regular dental cleanings and exams to identify any problems early

Soda and cavities, and how cutting back benefits your health

If you regularly drink soda, you might know about the damage it causes to your teeth. Besides having adverse effects on your weight and body, it is highly acidic (regular or diet), which can wear away your tooth enamel. Erosion happens when the acids in soft drinks encounter the tooth enamel, which reduces the outermost protective layer of your teeth. When tooth enamel erosion has occurred, soda consumption can affect the next layer, dentin, which can invite cavities. Lancaster, PA residents who drink soda regularly, along with poor oral hygiene, can develop cavities and gum disease, leading to other health ramifications, like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.

What are the symptoms of a cavity?

The symptoms and signs of cavities vary, depending on their severity and location. When tooth decay is just developing, you may have no symptoms. As a cavity grows, it may cause the following:

  • Spontaneous pain or toothache, without any apparent cause
  • Constant throbbing pain
  • Pain when eating or drinking
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
  • Visible discoloration or holes (pits) on any surface of a tooth
  • Pain when chewing or biting down

If you are experiencing mouth pain or a toothache, you should contact one of our team members at LANCO Dental Care in Lancaster, PA to schedule a dental exam as soon as possible. If cavities are left untreated, they penetrate into deeper layers of the tooth structure, leading to more serious dental problems, like gum disease or tooth loss. We are dedicated to helping our patients achieve good oral health, providing various preventive and restorative dental services to protect your smile.

Do you need a dentist in Lancaster, PA?

The best way to keep your teeth and gums healthy is to limit your soda consumption, live a healthy lifestyle, have a consistent at-home dental routine, and get regular dental cleanings. Regular visits to the dentist for a professional cleaning and dental exam can catch any issues early and protect your family's smile. If you feel you are experiencing symptoms of a cavity, contact our team at LANCO Dental Care in Lancaster, PA, and schedule an appointment with one of our dental experts.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.