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As the new year begins many of us are trying to choose healthier options. This includes attempting to make smarter choices in our choice of drink. A choice for many is to forego sugary sodas and choose carbonated water. The thought is we will choose a lower calorie drink that is also less harmful to our oral health. But is sparkling water safer for our teeth and gums?
What Is Sparkling Water?
Sparkling water is made by dissolving carbon dioxide in water, creating carbonic acid. This chemical process just adds bubbles. It does not add sugar, calories, or even caffeine. Tonic water, club soda, and mineral water are all types of readily available carbonated water, but these have added sodium, vitamins, or sweeteners, so it’s important to read the label.
Is Sparkling Water Harmful To Our Teeth?
Yes, sparkling water can harm your teeth. While sparkling water is only slightly more acidic than regular tap water it has the power to do damage to our teeth’s enamel through a process called tooth erosion (wearing away of the outer layer of our teeth due to acids).
Some of the causes of tooth enamel erosion include:
-Consuming excessive amounts of sodas (high levels of phosphoric and citric acids)
-Fruit drinks (some acids in fruit drinks are more erosive than battery acid)
-Dry mouth or low salivary flow (xerostomia)
-Diet (high in sugar and starches)
-Acid reflux disease (also called GERD)
-Medications (for example aspirin and antihistamines)
-Environmental factors (friction, wear and tear, and stress)
Research has shown that sparkling water has a pH (measure of aciditiy) of approximately 3 (with 5 being neutral). The researchers used extracted teeth and placed them in glasses filled with various types of sparkling waters. What they found was quite surprising. Sparkling water does in fact have the acidity to erode tooth enamel. In fact, the researchers found that the sparkling water compared to orange juice in terms of its erosive effect.
Sparkling Water Conclusion
While the research showed that the sparkling waters can erode tooth enamel, it is important to note that if used in moderation it is a perfectly healthy alternative to sodas and energy drinks. Remember to practice good oral hygiene after using these drinks and you should have little to worry about in terms of your dental health.
During a dental appointment, it’s not uncommon for your dentist to want to take a closer look at what’s going on inside your mouth using an X-ray. They’re useful tools for dental professionals, but for the rest of us, they can sometimes be a little intimidating. Here’s a quick guide on some of the most […]
Root canals are one of the most common dental procedures in the United States. Annually, approximately 15 million are conducted. If you do the math, that’s around 41,000 a day! Despite their status as a mainstay in dentistry, as well as the best way to save a tooth, root canals can occasionally have adverse effects […]
Throughout history (and especially as of late), vaccines have been a hot topic. While vaccination is an efficient way to prevent infectious diseases, the rise of oral vaccines proves this method to be an even more efficient and cost-effective way to prevent infectious diseases. Until now, oral vaccinations have focused on preventing diseases that enter […]
It’s common knowledge that smoking affects your oral health, but let’s not forget about smoking’s destructive counterpart: smokeless chewing tobacco (also known as “snuff”). For those of you who are unfamiliar with this, snuff is a fine grain tobacco that a user places in their mouth between their lips and gums. As saliva generates, the […]
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