Sports drink advertisers market to a young audience inspired by athletic role models. They encourage teenagers to drink their product to be a better athlete and feel more hydrated throughout the day. What advertisers do not mention is the damage sports drinks cause to teeth. Lake Forest dentist, Dr. Fondriest invites you to learn more about a recent study exposing the harmful effects of sports drinks on teeth.
Sports Drinks Create Environments for Cavities
The International Association for Dental Research in Miami conducted an experiment to study the effects of drinks like Gatorade, Powerade, Life Water, Vitamin Water, and Propel Fit Water. Since cow teeth are anatomically similar to human teeth, these were used to examine the results of prolonged exposure to each beverage. To replicate drinking sports drink throughout the day, researchers from the New York University College of Dentistry immersed the teeth in each beverage for 15 minutes at a time. When the teeth were not soaking in sports drinks, they were kept in saliva, as your teeth would be inside the mouth. This cycle continued for 75 to 90 minutes, mimicking the average time teenagers spend consuming these beverages.
Enamel Erosion is a Significant Factor
Previous studies have suggested that a combination of the especially acidic and sugar components in these sports drinks result even more damage to teeth than soft drinks. Acid and sugar are particularly harmful to teeth because they weaken tooth defenses against tooth decay, sensitivity to temperature, and tooth discoloration. Enamel erosion is the main concern with drinking beverages like these, especially when they are consumed over a long period of time, which reintroduces acid and sugar throughout the day.
How to Protect Your Teeth from Enamel Erosion
The results of the experiment with cow’s teeth suggest that sports drinks create enamel erosion at significant levels, making teeth vulnerable to cavities, sensitivity, and staining. If you are concerned about loss of enamel, stay tuned to the next blog for tips for drinking sports drinks responsibly while protecting your teeth.
Lake Forest Dentist Addresses Enamel Loss
Concerned about your enamel erosion or your risk of cavities? Contact Lake Forest Dental Arts at (847) 234-0517 to schedule a dental examination.