It’s National Have a Coke Day, but did you know that there are 33 grams of sugar in a single 12 oz can of coke? That's 2.2 tablespoons! Not only is that a lot of sugar for one beverage, sugary drinks like soda can also cause tooth decay and can stain your teeth yellow. This is caused by the soda’s phosphoric acid (added for flavor) and chromogens (added for color). The phosphoric acid is what breaks down tooth enamel, leaving your teeth vulnerable to decay and cavities. Weakened tooth enamel is also more susceptible to staining, which is caused by the chromogens in sodas. Really, soda is a double-edged sword when it comes to your mouth. On one hand, it’s a yummy sugary drink; on the other hand, it’s very damaging to your oral health.
At TNT Orthodontics we understand that asking our patients to completely quit consuming sodas is a hard sell, after all, Coca-cola is an American staple. So here are some tips for preventing teeth stains and cavities from soda:
- If you can’t completely cut soda out of your diet, try drinking it in moderation.
- Use a straw. This will help stop the soda from making direct contact with your teeth.
- Rinse with water after drinking any sugary beverage, especially soda.
- Drink your soda within a short period of time, not slowly over an extended period of time, then rinse with water. This way the chemicals in your soda won’t linger on your teeth.
Finally, more than anything, visit your dentist regularly for oral checkups and cleanings!