Energy drinks are popular among athletes as well as the general public. It’s estimated that 3.8 million people in the UK use Red Bull, while 3.4 million use Lucozade Energy and 3 million use Lucozade sport.
Energy drinks like Red Bull and Lucozade are designed to give you a boost in energy. They do this with sugar and caffeine.
However, they can also have a bad effect on your teeth.
In this blog post, we will discuss the effect energy drinks have on your teeth as well as some ways you can minimize the danger.
Energy drinks are acidic
Energy drinks like Lucozade are quite highly acidic. They’re not acidic enough to you burn your skin of course, but they are acidic enough to erode the enamel on your teeth, at least, when used regularly. The pH of Lucozade is 2.5 for example, which is only a little better than drinking pure lime juice in terms of acidity (lime juice has a pH of 2.1).
Acidity is very bad for our teeth. You could even say it’s the arch-enemy of teeth. Prolonged exposure to acidic drinks, such as energy drinks, cause the minerals in enamel to erode away, which is a process called demineralization, and this can cause cavities.
Energy drinks are sugary
Another bad thing about energy drinks is that they are high in sugar. A 500ml bottle of Lucozade Energy Orange, for example, contains a whopping 62 grams of sugar. That’s far more than the daily recommended limit for both men and women.
Red Bull is high in sugar too. One can of Red Bull typically contains 27 g of sugar.
Obviously sugar isn’t good for your teeth. Sugar is what the bacteria in your mouth feed on, so the more sugar you eat, the more plaque you’ll get. And the more plaque you get, the more cavities you’ll get too.
How to protect your teeth from energy drinks
The best way to protect your teeth is to avoid energy drinks altogether. Drink water instead it’s free, it’s good for you and it’s good for your teeth too.
If you do want to continue drinking energy drinks however, then here are a few precautions you can take:
- Rinse your mouth with water after. Water is a natural mouthwash that can bring the pH of your mouth back to normal after you drink an energy drink. So basically, it’s a good idea to take a swig of water after drinking an energy drink.
- Don’t brush your teeth straight away. You would think it would be a good idea to brush your teeth after having an energy drink. However, this isn’t the case. Brushing your teeth immediately after drinking something acidic, like an energy drink, can harm your teeth. This is because the acid softens your teeth. So it’s best to wait for an hour before brushing your teeth to give your teeth time to remineralize.
In this blog post, we’ve looked at the effect of sports and energy drinks on your teeth. If you’d like to know more, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with one of our dentist.Leave a reply