Poway and Rancho Bernardo, CA
Move over, Coke, and Pepsi. Carbonated water has surpassed soft drinks in popularity. In 2017, Americans purchased 12.8 billion gallons of carbonated water as opposed to 12.4 billion gallons of soft drinks. Brands like San Pellegrino, Perrier, and La Croix are popular—and why not? With many varieties being calorie-free with no added sugars, they seem like a healthier alternative for people who just need their fizzy fix. But are they good for your oral health? In this article, one of Poway’s top-rated dentists, Dr. Nicol Cook, wants to explore how your carbonated water habit could be jeopardizing your teeth.
Acid can wreak havoc on your dental health
It doesn’t matter if you’re drinking a soft drink, seltzer water, or an alcoholic beverage like beer. Any type of carbonation requires acid for the carbonation process to occur. Exposure to these acids can wear away your dental enamel—the protective outer layer of your tooth structure. These acids deteriorate the minerals in your enamel, even causing erosion and raising your susceptibility to decay and injury. The pH scale is used to measure acidity, with water being neutral with a pH of 7. Tooth enamel begins to wear down when exposed to any substance with a pH below 5.5. This is a danger to your teeth because many varieties of carbonated water are acidic, although there’s no definitive answer on their precise acid content. The American Dental Association recently released data evaluating the acidity of various beverages and found that both San Pellegrino and Perrier had a pH below 5.5. The flavoring in your favorite carbonated water also can increase the acid content, especially citrus flavors such as orange, lemon, and lime. These flavors lower the pH, while one study completed by scientists in the United Kingdom found that all types of flavored carbonated water had a pH between 2.74 and 3.34, which is highly acidic.
What can you do to reduce your risk?
You might be trying to cut back on soft drinks to improve your overall health, but over-consumption of these carbonated waters can pose a danger to your dental health. First off, practice moderation. Try to drink just one can or bottle a day, as opposed to two or three. Instead, go for plain water, which is calorie-free, sugar-free, provides hydration, and stimulates saliva production. You also should avoid nursing your carbonated water—or any carbonated drink throughout the day. Sipping on one of these carbonated beverages over a few hours actually increases the acidic exposure for your teeth.
Preventive Dental Care in Poway
Tooth wear can compromise your oral health, but Smiles by Dr. Cook can help. Our comprehensive program of preventive care includes fluoride treatments, which remineralizes the imperfections that develop naturally in your tooth enamel. If acid already has compromised your tooth enamel and led to problems, Dr. Nicol Cook can restore your teeth to their former flawless look through cosmetic dentistry. Interested in finding out more? To schedule an appointment, please call (858) 673-0141 or contact Smiles by Dr. Cook today. We welcome patients in Poway and Rancho Bernardo, California.