Let’s face it — soda is horrible for your dental health and overall wellness.
From the excess sugar to the added phosphoric acid, the ingredients in most sodas are bound to wreak havoc on your smile. In fact, researchers have found that many popular sodas are nearly as corrosive as battery acid.
So, how can we still enjoy the fizz and refreshing taste of soda without harming oral health?
The Rise of Sparkling Water
As Americans try to cut soda from their diet, many are opting for sparkling water instead. According to annual reports from Beverage Digest, soda consumption has decreased to a 30-year low in the United States.
In 2015, sparkling water was dubbed the new soda by the Huffington Post, with consumption increasing by 56.4% between 2009 and 2014. This shift in consumer tastes is largely attributed to the growing awareness of health concerns. After all, the list of health effects related to soda consumption is staggering. Some of the top related health concerns include:
- Decline in kidney function
- Caramel coloring linked to cancer
With all things considered, sparkling water should be the perfect substitute, right? It provides the refreshing fizz we love without all of the sugar, artificial sweeteners, and coloring. Unfortunately, it’s not quite that simple.
The Hidden Dental Risks of Carbonated Water
While sparkling water is a great no-sugar carbonated option, it can still be hazardous for your teeth because of its pH level.
The pH level of beverages is very important to consider because it is related to enamel erosion. To put it simply, a pH lower than 7 is acidic and a pH higher than 7 is alkaline. The teeth will begin to demineralize when exposed to a pH of 5.5, which then puts you at risk for erosion and eventual tooth decay.
A study from the University of Birmingham and Birmingham Dental Hospital found that flavored sparkling waters can be just as bad for teeth as soda, at least in some cases. With a pH ranging from 2.7 to 3.3, researchers found that some flavored soda waters spur on enamel erosion.
Of course, it’s important to note that choosing sparkling water is still a better option than traditional soda. Without the excess sugar in many traditional sodas, you’re still considerably less likely to cause dental health problems.
Our advice to our patients is to just stick to regular water. It’s the best option to stay hydrated while protecting the health of your smile. If you can’t stay away from fizzy drinks, we encourage you to opt for a flavorless sparkling water like Perrier, which has a pH around 5.5.
Maintain Your Healthy Smile at Amherst Village Dental
Whether you need restorative care due to soda consumption or just a routine hygiene cleaning, we’re here to provide excellent personalized care. Contact our office today to schedule your next appointment with Dr. Ang and the talented team here at Amherst Village Dental.