My preference is to have government stay out of my arena even if the Mayor might be right. Dentists can usually spot a soda drinker a mile away. These patients are often prone to dental cavities and white spots on their teeth known as decalcifications, which are actually the start of new cavities.
A cavity is an infection caused by a combination of carbohydrate-containing foods or beverages and bacteria that live in our mouths. Sweetened soda contains a high amount of sugar, a carbohydrate that can promote cavities. Sodas may be even more damaging to the teeth than other sugar containing beverages because they are acidic as well.
Before we drink a sugar-sweetened soda, the pH in our mouth is about 7.0, which is slightly more acidic than water. When the bacteria in our mouths are exposed to sugar, they metabolize it and produce acid. The acid causes the pH on the tooth surface to drop. At a pH of 5.2 or below, the acid begins to dissolve the hard enamel that forms the outer coating of our teeth. Over time this leads to erosion that causes cavities and painful toothaches.
Of all of the sodas tested, cola caused the most decalcification. Sweetened soda seems to damage teeth in two ways. The soda has a low PH and makes the mouth acidic, and the sugar content causes tooth decay when it comes into contact with bacteria in the mouth.
The easiest way to prevent cavities is by reducing the amount and frequency of eating sugary foods and beverages. If you can’t stop the consumption then consider brushing your teeth at least three times a day, especially after eating or drinking and before bed.
If you have to have sweetened soda, drink it through a straw in one sitting, to bypass the teeth altogether. If we can answer any of your questions or concerns please contact us.
Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC
290 Carpenter Drive, 200A
Atlanta (Sandy Springs), GA 30328
 Teeth exposed to cola, orange and lime soda had significantly more decalcification than those exposed to mineral water. Mayor Bloomberg has no restrictions on mineral water, yet.
- Dentist Sandy Springs: Polypharmacy Dry Mouth Solutions (therightsmile.wordpress.com)
- Sandy Springs Dentist: Green Tea and Your Oral Health (therightsmile.wordpress.com)
- Mayor Bloom’s Boom on Soda (marysweetness.wordpress.com)
- ‘You can take that to the bank’: Bloomberg promises successful appeal on soda ban ruling (pix11.com)