Put Down that Mountain Dew!
Don't let that new Coca Cola campaign that has your name on the bottle fool you. Soft drinks are the highest contributing factor for tooth erosion, when the hard protective coating called enamel is worn away by continued exposure to acid. Saliva is designed to cancel out the acid, and slowly restore the natural balance within the mouth. However, if the mouth is not given ample time to repair itself, the enamel gets worn away.
When enamel is worn away, it can leave the dentine area of the tooth exposed. When this happens, pain associated with hot and cold food/drinks will occur.
A recent study by the Journal of Public Health Dentistry examined 3,773 adults. Of those participants, 79% had evidence of dental erosion. And of those, the adults in the study with moderate and severe tooth wear consumed more soft drinks and fruit juices each day than the other groups.
Fruit juices, while a healthier alternative to sodas, have just as much if not more sugar content.
So, what were the best beverages to consume? Water and milk. Not only are they healthy for your mouth, they are beneficial to your body as well.
The good news is that dental erosion does not always need to be treated. Going to the dentist on a regular basis and listening to the advice given by your dental hygienist can prevent the erosion for getting worse. The longer it goes untreated can lead to aggressive and costly dental treatment.