We all enjoy energy drinks once in a while for the boost of vitality they offer. But did you know energy drinks are bad for your teeth?
A 2012 study on the effects of sugary drinks on tooth enamel revealed that energy drinks are two times more acidic compared to other sports drinks.
Dr. Rita Mitbavkar at UniSmile Dental in San Jose and Sunnyvale, California, has first-hand knowledge on how sugary drinks can affect dental health and recommends patients minimize energy drink intake to keep their teeth healthy.
Read on to learn more about how energy drinks can affect your teeth.
The pH scale indicates the acidity or basicity of watery solutions. The lower the pH, the higher the acidity, and the greater the chance of enamel damage.
A studypublished by General Dentistry in 2012 analyzed 22 beverages that are popular among young people - 13 sports drinks and 9 energy drinks. They found that the acidity of energy drinks is much higher (in fact, twice as high) than that of sports drinks.
Although tooth enamel is almost as tough as if not tougher than steel, it can erode when it comes into contact with highly acidic drinks. This, in turn, can lead to tooth decay and other dental health complications.
Human saliva has a pH of 6.2 to 7.6. When you drink an energy drink, the pH drops to 2 on the pH scale.
Here comes the kicker: the body requires at least 30 minutes to rebalance the lost pH. This leaves your mouth and tooth enamel vulnerable to acids for those 30 minutes.
In addition, energy drinks can limit the production of saliva and cause acid reflux. When this happens, bacteria is allowed to multiply in the oral cavity. When it does, it starts eating away at your tooth enamel and causes dental caries.
Another known side effect of drinking energy drinks is teeth grinding that can also affect the integrity of your teeth.
To sum up, energy drinks are not only rich in sugars, but they are also highly acidic. They can dehydrate your mouth and leave your teeth exposed to acids that damage your enamel. The best way to prevent this is to consume them in moderation.
Schedule a consultation with Dr. Mitbavkar at UniSmile Dental to learn more about the ill effects of energy drinks and how you can prevent them. Call (408) 226-1600 for our San Jose office or (408) 732-5300 for our Sunnyvale office or request an appointment online.