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The effects of energy drinks on your teeth

  • A blog considering the harmful implications of drinking energy drinks regularly

    By Naomi Todd

New research from the Oral Health Foundation has discovered that almost one in four British adults say they use energy drinks to get through their day. More than one in ten said they have an energy drink at least once a day, and this figure rises to almost one in three of 25-34 year olds.

Some energy drinks contain 55 grams of sugar, the equivalent of 14 teaspoons of sugar and almost twice as much as the recommended daily allowance for free sugars. According to researchers, it only takes 5 days for the enamel to start eroding after energy drink consumption.

The Oral Health Foundation says energy drinks are often also dangerously acidic and are causing a devastating effect on the nation’s oral health.

Dr Nigel Carter OBE, CEO of the Oral Health Foundation says:

“A dependence on energy drinks can very quickly lead to severe oral health problems such as tooth decay and erosion, as well as lead to any number of other health conditions and diseases…Energy drinks are adding an unnecessary risk to the UK’s health and over-consumption is causing both enormous and irreparable damage to the quality of life for millions of Brits.”

Foods that contain sugars of any kind can contribute to tooth decay. When teeth are not cleaned after eating, plaque bacteria in the mouth use the sugar to produce acids that can destroy the hard surface of the tooth, called enamel. After a while, tooth decay occurs. When teeth come in frequent contact with drinks with added sugars, the risk of decay increases.

Energy drinks can damage tooth enamel and cause decay

It has been found that the acid in energy drinks is so significant, that it could gradually destroy your tooth enamel. When your tooth enamel is damaged, it makes your mouth prone to bacteria, due to the lack of protection from the enamel. Serious dental problems can arise when bacteria seeps into your teeth.

Without the protection of the enamel, sensitives can occur on the teeth. This can create pain and discomfort when you eat certain foods. The roots of your tooth can become inflamed and bleeding in the gums can occur.

As energy drinks can erode your enamel, your teeth can become susceptible to decay and cavities. The enamel cannot be regrown after its damaged, so the decaying effects can be quite severe.

Cut down!

Energy drinks are seriously bad for your teeth and contain high levels of sugar and acid. Always drink plenty of water to dilute the acid and don’t brush your teeth straight after drinking, because it can spread the acid around your mouth. The best solution is to refrain from energy drinks all together.

If you do drink energy drinks, it’s advised to rinse your mouth out with water or chew gum. To avoid the acid spreading on teeth surfaces and causing erosion, it is advised to wait an hour to brush teeth after drinking sports and energy drinks.

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