In the heat of the Mississippi summer, we sweat a lot! You may think sports drinks are a good way to replenish all the electrolytes, vitamins and minerals that are lost through perspiration. However, it’s always best to go for water because sports drinks may stain your teeth and have other damaging effects.
As a restorative dentist, we see plenty of cases where tooth decay could have been prevented. Many times, the culprit is overconsumption of sodas, alcohol and sports drinks. In addition to staining your teeth, sports drinks specifically, can also wear away tooth enamel and weaken your teeth going as far as to cause hypersensitivity and bone erosion.
Why are too many sports drinks bad for teeth?
Most sports drinks include significant amounts of citric acid, which can lead to demineralization. This is where the citric acid works its way to the soft layer beneath the enamel called the dentin. Severe cases of demineralization can lead to tooth sensitivity and pain.
If you can’t put that sports drink down, we do have some guidelines we suggest you follow to ensure you are drinking them without causing harm.
- Limit consumption. Instead of having one sports drink a day, cut that number in half and see if you can even eventually get that number down to one or two per week.
- Wait to brush. Wait at least 30 minutes before brushing your teeth to allow softened enamel to reharden.
- Talk to your dentist. If you drink a lot of sports drinks, ask your dentist if you should use an acid-neutralizing remineralizing toothpaste to help reharden soft enamel.
There are many factors that lead to tooth decay and a bunch of practices that can prevent it like brushing and flossing twice per day. Sports drinks are only one piece of the puzzle, but an important one to understand so you can avoid dental problems caused by decay.
Belle Meade Family Dental serves patients in Flowood, Brandon and the surrounding areas of Rankin County. We offer same-day crowns, cosmetic and restorative procedures, cleaning and prevention services, dental implants and tooth extraction. At Belle Meade Family Dental, we aim to provide the ultimate patient experience with the highest level of quality care.
Adapted from: https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/news/20090403/sports-drinks-may-damage-your-teeth. Access 7/11/22.