Sports drinks may be popular among your peers, but drinking them regularly can negatively affect your teeth. They can lead to cavities and erosion of your enamel. We will explain how this happens and what you can drink instead.
The problems are that sports drinks have a lot of sugar and a high acid content. Also, when you become dehydrated, note that your saliva decreases, and saliva is necessary to clean out a number of things, including excess sugar and acid.
High sugar levels can lead to cavities, because bacteria that live in your mouth love sugar. They consume the sugar and produce acids that can eat enamel, resulting in cavities.
Sports drinks also have a hefty acidic level, generally ranking lower than 5.5 on the pH scale. A pH level of 5.5 is enough to cause enamel erosion, thereby weakening your teeth.
We also want you to understand what happens when you get dehydrated while performing a tiring activity. When dehydrated, you make less saliva, and saliva is important for cleaning foods and other things from your teeth. So when you try to rehydrate with a sports drink, there is not enough saliva to remove sugar and acid as effectively, leading to increased erosion.
If you are performing something really vigorous and exhausting, an occasional sports drink can be okay, but it is best not to make it a regular part of your diet. Fortunately, you can drink water in place of sports drinks. Water provides all the hydration you really need, especially when exercising.
If you would like to know how to better care for your teeth, come and visit Rogue Valley Family Dentistry in Grants Pass, Oregon. Our dentist, Dr. Joshua Scott Murdock, will guide you on this matter. Just call 541-479-5505 to schedule an appointment.