Sports drinks are designed to help athletes stay hydrated. However, these drinks can be dangerous to your oral health because they have added chemicals known as electrolytes. As much as electrolytes help your nerves and muscles perform well, they have acidic properties, creating a danger to your teeth.
How Sports Drinks Affect Your Teeth
Several lab and research tests have shown that a majority of sports drinks have a high concentration of acids and sugar. These properties can increase the risk of tooth cavities by damaging your tooth enamel. The enamel is the hardest tissue in your body. However, sports drinks have a high acid concentration that they can wear away the enamel within a short time. This makes your teeth vulnerable to dental sensitivity, stains, and cavities. The fact that sports drinks also contain sugar is equally destructive. Sugar can feed the harmful bacteria in your mouth and cause their build-up. When combined, these factors can lead to the development of serious oral conditions like gum disease, tooth decay, cavities, and periodontal disease.
While sports drinks pose a great risk to your teeth, there are several things you can do to reduce their damage. For instance, you can use a straw when drinking them. A straw is helpful because it reduces contact between your teeth and the energy drink. You should also sip the energy drink slowly. Avoiding huge gulps when drinking sports drinks will help limit the damage. This is because it allows saliva in your mouth to wash away the acids before significant damage is caused. Sipping slowly also prevents your mouth from getting dry. Keep in mind that a dry mouth is ideal for bacteria growth. This can result in serious oral infections like tooth decay and advanced periodontitis. Visit our offices for more information on how sports drinks can damage your teeth.