As family dentists serving the Liverpool area, we see first hand, often daily, the damage that a diet too high in sugar can do to both dental and overall health and well being. The ever growing popularity of sugary beverages, including those considered “sports drinks”, has been a major contributing factor to a host of disease in addition to tooth decay and gum disease.
Dr. Buckle and the staff of Buckle Advanced Dental Care in Wirral support the recent introduction of what will be known as the “sugar tax“. Levied mostly on sugar-laden beverages, this tax hopes to both reduce consumption and raise some much needed funds for school physical education programs. Reducing the amount of sugar in the modern diet could lead to a reduction in poor dental health, diabetes and the growing rate of childhood obesity.
Sugar And Your Dental Health
When we consume sugar in our diet, especially processed and added sugars typically found in sodas, we often set the stage for harmful bacteria to damage the teeth and gums. For patients with existing periodontal disease, this bacteria can enter the bloodstream and have an affect on overall health and systemic disease.
The way in which we consume these beverages can also impact our oral health: sipping on sodas allows sugar to sit on the surfaces of the teeth and gums for an extended period of time, increasing the opportunity for harmful bacteria to take hold and begin to break down tooth enamel or gum tissue. This leads to decay, cavities and gum disease, all of which compromise the integrity of the teeth and can have a direct affect on overall physical well being.
There are several ways to reduce the effects of sugar on oral health in addition to reducing your consumption of sodas, sports drinks and candy:
- Rinse the mouth with water after consuming sugary foods and beverages
- Chew sugarless gum after eating
- Consume natural sugars as part of a meal instead of processed snacks between meals
When you see the price of those soda pops and sports drinks on the rise, consider this to be in the best interest of your long term health. Take this opportunity to reduce your consumption as well as that of your children and loved ones. And don’t forget to visit our Wirral dentist office regularly for preventive dental care. During these visits, we look for the early signs of decay and disease to help you avoid bigger dental problems down the road.