Posts for: July, 2013

The Effect of Soda on Your Teeth

 

Soda can do some remarkable damage to your teeth.  Pop or soda can be a refreshing drink, especially on a hot day.  It’s a staple of barbeques and pizza parties – kids love sodas and some people consume it with every meal.  However, much like anything, too much soda can damage your health.  This delicious drink can bring harm to your body – they add unnecessary calories to your diet and the large amounts of sugar can lead to diabetes.  Some studies even show that consuming as little as one can of soda per day can give you a 48 percent higher chance of a heart attack.

Soda is as corrosive to teeth as drinking battery fluid, and this can occur as soon as the first three minutes of consumption.  This is caused by a combination of mostly three factors, one is the sugar (which is really a minor factor compared to the others) then comes the phosphoric acid present in some sodas and finally the staining effect that they can have on your teeth.

The sugar problem is caused by acid creating bacteria on the surface of your teeth that feed on sugar and use it to create acid, which destroys your teeth.  The sugar in sodas is easily used by the teeth as opposed to the sugars in say, whole grain bread which does not break down in the mouth.

The phosphoric acid is worth avoiding in general.  This is the same substance that dentists use to scour enamel so you know it’s effective in removing it.  Of course it’s not present in the same concentrations as in a dental application but it could be worth avoiding all the same.  Erosion is far more harmful than decay, and can cause hypersensitivity.

Finally comes the cavities and the staining of the teeth.  Sodas add layers of sugars to your teeth that create plaque and offer food for hordes of bacteria that happen to be in your mouth.  Over time this layer can produce a yellowed effect on your teeth that is unsightly and will need to be treated by a dentist.

So what can you do to prevent this?  The most obvious answer is to reduce or altogether stop consuming sodas.  Substitute with fresh juices or just have milk or better yet, water.  Citrus juice should be consumed in moderation, and if possible, in one sitting as the highly acidic nature of these juices can cause harm to teeth.  Energy drinks and power drinks should also be avoided as they can have as much ore even more sugar than soda.

If you do have soda, use a straw to reduce contact with your teeth.  Also rinse out your mouth and teeth with water to wash out the sugars and stop them from wearing away the enamel in your teeth.  Reduce your cavities and stop the erosion of enamel by using toothpaste and mouth rinse with fluoride.

Managing you oral health is important – teeth is one of the few things in the body which cannot regenerate.  Take care of your teeth today. 


Examining the Causes of Xerostomia (Dry Mouth)

 

When people ask dental professionals about their dental care, many times they have questions about what causes them to have a dry mouth. Indeed, having a dry mouth is a problem that many Americans struggle with today.

It may not seem like such a big deal, but having a dry mouth can be very uncomfortable and unpleasant. Glands in our mouths produce saliva, which is our mouths’ natural lubricant.

Saliva keeps our mouths moist and feeling pleasant, and it is also our mouth’s natural cleaner. Saliva also helps eliminate harmful bacteria from our mouths.

You can see why it is so important for our mouths to be moist and our saliva production to be healthy. Having a dry mouth can also be referred to as xerostomia.

You may be wondering why xerostomia happens to some people and not to others. Xerostomia is often the side effect of a variety of medications.

People taking medications used to treat anxiety, depression, allergies, pain, colds, acne, obesity, epilepsy, diarrhea, nausea, asthma, and Parkinson’s disease often experience dry mouth. Dry mouth can even be a side effect of certain sedatives and muscle relaxants.

Dry mouth can also be a side effect of certain medical conditions or diseases. Conditions like AIDS, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, anemia, cystic fibrosis, arthritis, hypertension, mumps, and stroke often plague their victims with a dry mouth along with the other ailments that occur with the condition.

Certain medical treatments can also cause a person to have dry mouth. Special treatments like radiation or chemotherapy treatments are common treatments that often result in a dry mouth.

If you have nerve damage to your head or neck, you may experience a dry mouth as well. Whether your nerve damage comes from injury or surgery, it does not matter; you will still probably experience a dry mouth.

See your dental professional today to get more information and knowledge about what causes dry mouth.  




E. John Baron DDS, INC.
550 Water Street, Suite L-1
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
(831) 426-9200

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