Dangers of Regularly Consuming Hydrating Sports Drinks
Posted on 4/20/2019 by Enrique Darancou, DDS
If you rely on sports drinks to stay hydrated and quench your thirst, it is important to know how your teeth might be impacted. These drinks are often preferred to water because they restore electrolytes. However, you should never sacrifice your oral health in order to enjoy a better tasting beverage after your workout.
Loaded with Sugar
While the actual amount of sugar in a sports drink will vary with the brand, most all contain sugar to some degree. For example, a 12-ounce bottle may have 21 grams of sugar, and while this is less than the 30+ grams of sugar found in a can soda, it is significantly more sugar than water.
Sugar is damaging to the teeth. It feeds oral bacteria that create acids and attack the enamel. This is especially problematic for teens and younger people, as their enamel is already underdeveloped. When you consume a diet that is high in sugar, you may also put your overall health at risk of conditions like diabetes and osteoporosis.
High Acid Content
Another problem associated with sports drinks is the high content of citric acid. While this flavor boost is desirable for many people, it can actually be damaging to the teeth. Washing your teeth in this acid consistently can damage the enamel, and when the enamel is stripped from the teeth, it becomes prone to cavities, decay, and sensitivity.
When considering how drinks affect the teeth, it is important to consider the pH value. Drinks with low pH values are highly acidic. Water is ideal with a pH of nearly 7, but many sports drinks rival soda with their low pH.
Making good food and beverage choices is just one way that you can improve your oral health. Additionally, you'll need to visit our office regularly for dental cleanings and evaluations. Call us today to set up your next appointment.