Sugar is one of the biggest enemies of your teeth because it helps bacteria that causes tooth decay to multiply. In an effort to do oral health a good favour, some people consume sugar-free beverages as an alternative.
While diet sodas and other beverages do not contain sugar, they can cause the same amount of dental erosion as regular sodas. According to The Guardian, sugar-free sweets and drinks can damage teeth and even cause gastric problems. This is based on a review of the health effects of sugar-free products added to treats and drinks.
Acid and Dental Erosion
Reducing your sugar intake may reduce the risk of tooth decay, but the combination of acids in some foods and drinks can contribute to dental erosion. Research suggests that the acidic flavourings and preservatives in sugar-free products may weaken tooth enamel and result in dental erosion.
A news article from the Mail Online also notes that both sugar-containing and sugar-free drinks produced measurable loss of tooth enamel, with no major difference between these two types of beverages.
Choose Tooth-Friendly Drinks
Blue Sky Dentistry notes that it is best to choose beverages that are low in acid. This can keep the teeth from wearing and protect them from becoming overly sensitive. Researchers suggest that water and root beer had the least effect on your pearly whites. Milk and unsweetened tea are also ideal choices.
Dentists suggest checking food and beverages for citric and phosphoric acid. When you do consume acidic products, it is best not to brush right away, as doing so can cause erosion in the external layer of the tooth. It is advisable to rinse with water and wait at least an hour before brushing.
The Best Sugar-Free Product
The only ideal sugar-free product is sugar-free gum because it can get the saliva flowing. In fact, the British Dental Health Foundation recommends it, especially at times when it may not be possible to brush teeth. You can reduce acid attack by chewing sugar-free gum, as it helps produce the mouth’s natural defence against acid.
Maintain your oral health by eating a variety of foods that will help with better maintenance. Limit consumption of products containing sugar and starches between meals. If you need to snack, choose nutritious foods such as cheese and raw vegetables.