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How Sugar Affects Your Teeth

September 2017

Eating twenty-five sugar cubes in a day seems crazy, right? According to the Washington Post, the average person drinks two and a half sodas a day. Each soda contains more than of 35 grams of sugar, so it seems that crazy is the new norm.

Our dentists tell us that sweets are bad for our teeth and gums. Tooth decay is the main reason. Tooth decay is the process of your teeth eroding, becoming weak and full of holes. Sounds grisly, doesn't it? But how does this actually happen? Your mouth is full of bacteria, some good and some bad. The bad bacteria feeds on the sugars from sodas and candy. The bacteria then turn that sugar into acidic substances that can eat away at your tooth enamel causing cavities and decay. These acids, if left untreated, will certainly become a problem in the future.

Excess sugar stains your teeth. It isn't just coffee and wine that stains. Sodas are full of artificial colors and sugars that yellow your teeth over time. Brushing, flossing and maintaining a good dental regimen is a start. However, once you lose that enamel, it is hard to get it back. Fluoride is one way to rebuild lost enamel, but it's much quicker to destroy the enamel than to restore it.

Sugar is in almost all foods. It's important to limit the quantity of your sugar intake. If you eat three meals a day and in between those meals you snack and sip on sodas, your teeth are being constantly bathed in sugar.

Any way you spin it, excess sugar is damaging to your teeth. The best way to help fight tooth decay is to cut down on sweets and sugar. Also, maintaining good dental hygiene and making sure that you are using toothpaste with fluoride helps reverse the negative effects sugar can have on teeth.