What Are Sports Drinks Doing to Your Teeth?

They’re chockfull of electrolytes, natural ingredients, and a host of other beneficial elements, and they’re advertised as being much better (at least, tastier) than the age-old thirst-quencher, water. There’s little wonder, then, why so many children, teens, and adults alike repeatedly consume sports drinks instead of water. Unfortunately, while they can effectively quench your thirst and please your palate, sports drinks aren’t as kind to your teeth, which are the first part of your body to contact anything you eat and drink. Your Southlake dentists, Drs. Wright and Heron, take a look at why the popular beverages can cause serious and irreversible damage to your teeth if consumed too frequently.

The Dangers

Acidity is one of the most significant dangers that can face your teeth. Measured by increments on a scale (the pH scale), acidity is defined as a substance that measures below 7 (which is neutral). On average, a healthy mouth hovers around 5.5 on the pH scale; when influenced by the acidity levels of sports drinks, your mouth’s environment drops below 5.5 (becoming more acidic), and the mineralized layer of enamel around your teeth begins to erode. Consistent consumption can overexpose your teeth to acid erosion, making them more susceptible to destructive cavities. The sugar content in most sports drinks can also feed oral bacteria that convert sugar into acid, increasing the risks to your teeth.

Healthier Thirst Quencher

The good news is that your oral health is dynamic. While drinking a sports drink now will make your mouth highly acidic, the acidity will dissipate (usually after 20-30 minutes) as long as you don’t drink another. To bring your mouth back to a healthy pH quicker, drink or swish water after you finish your sports drink. Water is neutral, and has an inherent ability to neutralize harmful acids. To reduce your risks further, Dr. Wright and Dr. Heron recommend drinking water more often than you choose other beverages.

ABOUT YOUR SOUTHLAKE DENTISTS:

As a native Texan, Gregory Wright, DDS, opened his private practice in Southlake, TX in 1992. He and Dr. Victoria Heron are happily accepting new patients from Southlake, Grapevine, Keller, Trophy Club, Colleyville, and all surrounding communities. To learn more, call our office today at (817) 481-7999.