Can Cough Syrup cause Cavities?

Cough Syrups and Cavities

Cough Syrups and CavitiesMost of the people reach out for over the counter medicated syrups to relieve and ease their cough, colds, flu and runny noses. But these syrups either sweetened or sugar-free are as bad for your oral health as any other sugar contained food, because they make you prone to oral cavities when you are already encountering other health related problems. So most of the dentists are not in the favour of using these syrups to get relieve from coughs and colds.

Which ingredients of cough syrups can lead to cavities and how?

There are various ingredients present in the cough syrups or drops that can lead to cavities. They are:

Fructose Corn Syrup and Sucrose: High intensity of fructose corn syrup or sucrose in cough syrups may lead to cavities because bacteria in the mouth breeds on sugar and further  breaks it down and forms acids which in turn may harm the tooth enamel.

Citric Acid: Citric acids, low pH levels and high acidity in syrups can erode your tooth enamel and as well wear it down.

Alcohol: At times, alcohol is added in your cough syrups which makes your mouth dry. The saliva in your mouth naturally rinses the sugars and acids away but the due to alcohol saliva production decreases, thus sugars and acids remain in the mouth for longer periods thus leading to cavities and tooth decay.

And if taken at bed time, the negative effects of these syrups increases doubly as saliva production is naturally slows down at night.

What are the remedies to check these negative effects of cough syrups?

Medications are necessary to treat ailments but we can negate their effects. In order to counteract and undo the negative effects of these cough syrups, dentists advise to manage the time and type of these medications.  By adopting the following measures you can prevent the adverse effects of cough syrups:

  • If available, better opt for the pill or capsule form of the medication.
  •  Instead of bedtime, try to take medications during the meals so that the saliva can rinse away the sugar and acids.
  • Brush and rinse your mouth after taking the medicine, as it will help to overcome the bad effects of acids and as well will keep your mouth wet.
  •   Drink plenty of water as it will not only wash away the sugar and neutralize the acids but will also help you to heal quickly.
  • If after taking medicine you feel dry mouth, chew sugar-free gums or lozenges.
  • Get some calcium supplements or use topical fluoride after taking liquid medication.

Contact Dr. Bikram Singh DMD for the proficient and state of art treatment of any of yours oral health related issues. Our professionals provide quality care to the patients and make sure that their mouths are as healthy as they should be.


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