Here at FY Smile, we pride ourselves on providing our patients with the most comprehensive and personal dental treatment in Sydney. Part of that is helping our patients follow a tooth-friendly diet - continue reading to learn why we don’t recommend sugary or acidic drinks as your trusted dental professionals.
Why are Certain Beverages Bad for My Teeth?
So, what exactly makes certain drinks bad for your teeth? Check out the information below:
- High Sugar Levels: The mouth is home to naturally-occurring bacteria which are typically regulated or removed with regular brushing and flossing. These bacteria feed on sugar. When drinks with high sugar levels are consumed, bacteria are permitted to thrive and produce an acidic byproduct that causes damage to the tooth enamel. Over time, this places the teeth at a perilously high risk of developing decay; this is why it is typically recommended to avoid sugary beverages and opt for water whenever possible.
- High Acidity Levels: Acidic beverages - such as coffee, tea, or wine - place the teeth at an increased risk of losing valuable enamel. The layer of enamel is responsible for protecting the more delicate inner layers of the tooth; once it has worn away, it can not be replaced, and the tooth faces an increased risk of decay or damage.
Low PH Levels: Drinks with a low PH typically have high levels of acidity, and should be avoided in order to protect the enamel of the teeth. Beverages with a low PH include soft drinks, orange juice, sparkling water, and cranberry juice.
Here at FY Smile, we encourage our patients to avoid these types of beverages in order to protect and promote the health and strength of the teeth - particularly the tooth enamel.
Drinks That are Bad for Your Teeth
There are certain beverages that - while they may certainly be delicious - are best avoided to keep your teeth strong and healthy.
Below are some examples of drinks that are considered to be “bad” for your teeth:
- Energy Drinks
- Sparkling Water
- Fruit Punch/Cocktail Juices
- Sweetened Iced Tea
- Wine (both red and white)
- Alcoholic Beverages (beer, liquor, etc)
- Vinegar-Based Drinks
- Sports Drinks
- Soft Drinks
- Sweetened nut milks (be sure to opt for the unsweetened options instead)
Of course, we’re all human! In the case that you do choose to have one of the beverages mentioned above, it is absolutely crucial that you thoroughly brush and floss your teeth as soon as possible as a protective measure for your tooth enamel.
It is also important to keep in mind that it is extremely important to finish your beverage in one sitting rather than sipping on it throughout the day. Taking your time to finish a drink exposes the enamel of the teeth to harmful bacteria, acids, and sugars over an extended period of time, consequently increasing your risk of developing decay.
Best Beverages for Your Teeth
It is always best to reach for water to quench your thirst, as water is neither acidic nor high in sugar content. Not only is water beneficial for your body as a whole; it is highly beneficial and healthy for your teeth, as well.
Water cleanses the mouth and washes away any harmful or acidic residue that may be left behind from the foods and beverages you eat and drink.
Fluoridated water is also great for the teeth. Fluoride, a naturally occurring mineral, is often added to water as a protective and preventative measure for the teeth. Since the 1950s, fluoride has proved to be effective in improving dental health. In fact, Australians born after the 1970s have about half the amount of tooth decay that was examined in past generations.
While of course regular brushing and flossing must always be practiced, drinking water can be an incredibly beneficial addition to your oral care routine!
Milk is also a fantastic choice for a teeth-friendly beverage. Milk is high in calcium, which helps effectively strengthen and protect the outer layer of enamel. Milk also has a neutral PH and helps to stimulate saliva production, which is exponential in keeping the mouth moist and protecting the teeth from decay.
If you are lactose intolerant or simply prefer not to drink cow’s milk, almond milk is an excellent substitution, as it is high in calcium and vitamin D.
Other drinks that are good for your teeth include:
- Coconut Water
- Green Tea (with no sugar added)
- Black Tea (with no sugar added)
- Diluted Fruit Juices
- Vegetable Juices
Your trusted dentist will be able to tell you more about which beverages are best for protecting and promoting the health of your teeth.
Protecting Your Teeth
Of course, in addition to choosing drinks that are healthy for your teeth, the best way to upkeep a strong and healthy smile is to practice proper oral home care. It is also important to make sure that you attend your regularly scheduled professional dental cleaning and check up appointments.
Be sure to thoroughly brush your teeth at least twice daily, being sure to reach all surfaces of the teeth to rid them of harmful acids, sugars, and plaque. Brushing should always be accompanied by thorough flossing between each of the teeth to ensure that the contacts between the teeth are clean and free of harmful substances. An antimicrobial mouthwash is an excellent addition to your home care routine, as well.
Even if you practice thorough brushing and flossing, it is quite possible that you may miss a spot or two. That is where we come in; during your professional dental cleaning, your hygienist will ensure that all surfaces of the teeth are thoroughly cleaned.
Below are some more tips for keeping your teeth strong, healthy, and protected from decay:
- Rinse out your mouth with water after eating or drinking any harmful foods or beverages
- Use a straw when drinking sugary or acidic beverages to limit exposure to the tooth enamel
- Brush and floss after each meal (if possible)
- Opt for sugar-free beverage options when drinking anything other than water
- If you choose to have any beverage other than water, be sure to drink it with a meal and finish it while you are eating
FY Smile: Best Dentist in Sydney
With the information you have learned here, you should have a more thorough understanding of why certain sugary or acidic drinks are best avoided in order to protect the health of your teeth.
Our team of caring dental professionals is here to help you. For more information about which drinks are best for your teeth, do not hesitate to ask.
Here at FY Smile, we strive to provide our patients with an unparalleled level of dental care; that is why we are proud to offer comprehensive dental and orthodontic treatment in beautiful Sydney.
Whether you are interested in dental veneers, Invisalign, traditional braces, a complete smile makeover, or a simple dental cleaning, you are in good hands. Our team of caring dental professionals is here to provide the treatment you need to create the beautiful and healthy smile that you have always dreamt of.
Your journey towards optimal dental health begins here. In addition to offering braces and Invisalign in Sydney, FY Smile is proud to offer a wide range of dental services. From basic tooth fillings to dental implants to deep cleanings and more, we’ve got you covered.
For more information about why sugary and acidic drinks are bad for your teeth or to get scheduled in our Double Bay dental clinic, feel free to give us a call anytime at 02 8319 5557.
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