A typical and congested day of teens includes shuffling through classes, sports, plays and part time jobs which always keep them on their toes. In trying to keep-up with their fast paced jam-packed schedule, teens are becoming more dependent on quick snacks like carbonated drinks and nutrition bars. These quick snacks keep them alert but they are causing irreversible damage to their oral health.
Jane Soxman, DDS, is of the view ‘Premature loss of tooth enamel and weakening of overall tooth structure are two devastating oral effects of teens’ poor diet that cannot be reversed later in life.”
What are adverse effects of carbonated drinks on teens’ oral health?
Adolescence is a time period for optimal bone growth, so more nutrients are needed to strengthen teeth and bones. But these nutrients and calories begin to counteract when teens’ tend to consume carbonated drinks and the following damages begin to occur to their oral health:
- Carbonated drinks are a major reason of increasing cavities among teens.
- Acids in sodas and energy drinks break down tooth enamel, especially around sealants and previously done restorations thus leading to tooth decay or tooth loss.
- Phosphoric, citric, tartaric and carbonic acids in various carbonated drinks limit the calcium absorption capacity in the bone structure of the oral cavity. This lack of calcium intake can lead to periodontal bone loss.
How does snacking affect your teeth?
To-go bars and non-nutritious snacks are affecting teens’ teeth and over the time, they can take a toll on their teeth.
- When sugar in the nutrition bars or snacks comes into contact with the bacteria in the mouth, it attacks teeth and eventually results in tooth decay.
- Added sugars in foods may lead to tooth decay. Read the food labels and choose the foods with low added sugars.
- Non-nutritious snacks or foods make it difficult for tissues in mouth to resist infection and this may lead to periodontal disease.