Are you one of the 30% of Americans who drinks at least one pop each day? If so, then you may not be surprised to learn all pops—including sugar-free ones—can be very harmful for your teeth. In fact, drinking pop can lead to erosion of your enamel, cavities, and even tooth discoloration. If you’re finding it hard to quit the habit, however, there are a few things you can do to minimize the damage. While these methods won’t fully protect your teeth, here are a few things you can do to limit the damages caused by your routine soft drink.
1. Limit your consumption.
We would be remiss if we didn’t first recommend that you limit your consumption of soft drinks. Pop can be very damaging to your teeth—causing erosion and cavities—so limiting or even avoiding pop can greatly benefit your oral health. Be sure not to drink more than one pop per day, as even just one can cause damage.
2.Rinse with water.
When you enjoy your pop, try swishing with water afterward. This can remove the acids and sugars that pop creates in your mouth and stop them from harming your teeth. Also, tap water typically has fluoride, which can fortify your dental enamel against decay.
3. Try drinking pop substitutes.
There are a number of beverages—such as carbonated water—that have less added sugar and, therefore, are much better for your oral health. These fizzy drinks can curb your appetite for pop and help you cut the habit altogether!
4. Drink it quickly.
While this might seem counterintuitive, drinking pop quicker can actually help spare your teeth. The idea is to avoid sipping on pop gradually over a long period of time. This only prolongs the “acid attacks” on your teeth caused by the sugars in your pop, causing more damage. Therefore, drink your pop quickly and then you should swish water in your mouth right away.
5. Use a straw.
Using a straw is an easy way to minimize the damage pop can do to your teeth. By drinking through a straw, you can help to limit the harmful acids and sugars from soaking your dental enamel.
6. Don’t brush your teeth immediately.
Here’s another surprising one! Brushing your teeth immediately after drinking pop can actually do more harm than good. Instead of protecting your teeth from cavities, brushing your teeth when they’re vulnerable from pop actually only helps the acids to further corrode your dental enamel.
7. Schedule a dentist appointment.
According to the American Dental Association, you should visit your dentist every six months. However, if you’re an avid pop drinker, you may want to visit your dentist even more often. By doing so, you can receive a thorough professional cleaning and oral health exam to protect your teeth from cavities and other oral health issues.
Want to schedule your next dentist appointment? Call Advanced Family Dental & Orthodontics today!