Are Sports Drinks Ruining Your Child’s Smile?

Sports and energy drinks have become a very popular way to hydrate for kids and teens. While many sports drinks have electrolytes and some contain vitamins, nearly all of them are packed with high amounts of sugar and acids. Bathing your teeth in this harmful combo throughout the day can wreak havoc on the teeth. Even worse, the damage is most often irreversible!

The Academy of General Dentistry revealed a study that found that energy and sports drinks contain so much acid that they can start damaging the teeth after just five days of consistent use. According to the Academy of General Dentistry, an estimated 30 to 50% of U.S. teenagers consume energy drinks. 62% of them have at least one sports drink per day. Considering the serious dental effects of sports drinks, this is a pediatric dental topic worth discussing.

Acids can erode tooth enamel, which is he outermost layer of your teeth. Once enamel is gone, it doesn’t grow back. This leaves the tooth more vulnerable to decay, and it can also lead to sensitivity and yellow staining as the inner dentin layer shows through. Since tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease (five times more common than asthma), parents should take all preventive measures possible in preventing cavities. Could you reduce or eliminate sports drinks in your house?

If your child does consume an energy or sports drink, have them hold off on brushing for at least 45 minutes. The acids cause enamel to soften, which causes the teeth to be more susceptible to harm from the abrasives found in toothpaste. The best course of action after drinking a sports drink is to chase it down with some water. This rinses away the acids and sugars and lessens the chance for tooth damage. Consuming a sports drink all at once is also better than sipping on it throughout the day. Educate your child on these important tips so that they can start protecting their smile too!

When it comes to hydrating your child after a sports practice or hard playtime in the yard, offer water instead. Not only does water hydrate the body faster, but it can eliminate the risk of causing irreversible damage to those pearly whites. At Manhattan Dental Design, we proudly offer complete pediatric dental care, and we always seek ways to educate parents on how they can establish healthier oral health habits at home.

Posted on behalf of Manhattan Dental Design

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