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Are Sports Drinks Bad For Teeth?  

added on: June 16, 2021

Sports drinks are the beverage of choice for many after exercise or spending a long day in the hot weather. While these electrolyte-packed drinks can help replenish the body with minerals lost through sweat, they can also be bad for teeth. Join your dentist in Edina as we take a look at how these beverages can cause irreversible damage to your teeth. 

This Time, It’s Not The Sugar

Some people choose to drink sports beverages in place of soda because they don’t contain as much sugar. Now, while it’s still very true that sugar can contribute to oral health problems, this time, we’re more concerned with the acid found in many sports drinks.  

Acidic foods and drinks damage tooth enamel, and once enamel is gone… it’s gone. This is concerning for your dentist in Edina. Tooth enamel serves as a layer of protection against bacteria, and without it, bacteria have full reign over your teeth. These bacteria will work their way into tiny crevices and feed on leftover food particles and sugars. They will then release acid as part of their digestion process. And the cycle repeats. More acid means more risk for enamel loss and more risk for dental problems. 

Cavities & More

Acid and bacteria are a recipe for decay and cavities. When a cavity is new, it’s usually easy to treat with a dental filling. However, if the decay is not treated by your dentist in Edina, it will continue to eat away at the tooth. Deeper areas of decay may require a root canal and perhaps a dental crown to stop the progression and save your tooth. But if not treated, an infection can develop, or the tooth may need to be extracted. 

Signs of a Cavity

Early treatment is the best way to protect your tooth and stop decay. If you notice any signs of a cavity, see your dentist in Edina promptly. Signs include: 

  • Sensitivity to heat, cold, or sweets
  • Discoloration 
  • Toothaches
  • Pain when biting
  • Holes or pits on the tooth surface

The next time you’re looking to quench your thirst, we always recommend choosing water. However, if you need that extra level of hydration and electrolytes, try drinking your sports drink with a straw. This will help limit the amount of acid that comes in contact with your teeth. 

As always, brushing and flossing your teeth every day and seeing your dentist twice a year will also help protect your teeth and overall oral health.