Harmful Effects of Soda on Teeth

pediatric dentist tarrant countyThere are many aspects of soda that make it an undesirable beverage especially for children. Soda’s primary ingredient of sugar leads to dental decay not to mention unwanted weight gain. Visits to the pediatric dentist should be initiated starting at the age of 12 months, and then consistently kept every six months. However, these visits should be for check-ups … hopefully not to repair decayed teeth.

Another significant drawback to drinking soda pop (regular or sugar free) is the impact it can have on dental enamel. The acid content (acid is what gives soda its carbonation) can eat away at this protective covering on teeth; and once enamel is gone, it cannot be replaced. 

The acid content (acid is what gives soda its carbonation) can eat away at this protective covering on teeth; and once enamel is gone, it cannot be replaced.

The solution seems very simple. Just discontinue consuming these carbonated beverages. There are many more healthy drinks to substitute, with the ideal beverage being water. But for many (especially youngsters), water is viewed as flavorless and boring. Many turn to sports drinks or juice, but in many cases these can contain as much sugar as soda and are not the optimum alternative.

Children and teens are out of sight so much of the time, it is impossible to monitor their food and beverage consumption 24/7. So education is the key. Make sure your children understand that soda consumption can be harmful to their health and dentition; and that their teeth must last for their lifetime. If they are riddled with decay or enamel wears away, the kid’s dentist will be a regular fixture. This might be a message your child will understand especially if they have experienced having a cavity repaired.

Part of that education might be the best ways to protect their teeth because you know they will likely be drinking soda at least occasionally. Encourage them to use a straw so most of the beverage will bypass the teeth. Tell them to swallow right away – don’t swish soda around their mouth. And lastly, if they are going to drink soda, rinse after consumption with plain water (brushing should be delayed as the acids in soda can soften the enamel); brushing too soon can do damage to dental enamel.

Your pediatric dentist can be a wonderful asset when it comes to educating your children on the harmful effects soda can have on their teeth; early visits can mean early education for your entire family. Call 817-569-6633 to schedule an appointment today.