Sports drinks and energy drinks are very popular beverages for teenagers these days. Most people are aware that acidic beverages are bad for our teeth. Although acid by itself does not cause dental decay, it can wear away enamel slowly and cause tooth sensitivity. While parents tend to buy the sugar-free versions of sports and energy drinks to prevent their children from developing cavities, many are unaware of how much citric acid is added into these drinks.

Unfortunately, even when we look carefully at the nutritional label, it’s impossible to tell how much citric acid is in each can or bottle. It turns out that companies are only responsible for listing citric acid as part of the ingredient list and not obligated to inform the consumers exactly how much of it is in their product. The amount of citric acid can vary greatly depending on flavor and brand. However, energy drinks in general cause twice as much damage to tooth enamel compared to sports drinks.

Therefore, it is important to minimize and limit the consumption of these beverages in children and young adults. If they do have these types of drinks make sure to wait at least an hour before brushing to give the acid sometime to be neutralized in the saliva before it gets spread everywhere by the toothbrush. A good fluoride mouthwash after consumption of acidic drinks will also help decrease the damage on enamel.

In addition to the effects energy drinks have on the mouth, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) energy drinks also cause:

  • dehydration (not enough water in your body)
  • heart complications (such as irregular heartbeat and heart failure)
  • anxiety (feeling nervous and jittery)
  • insomnia (unable to sleep)

If you have any questions regarding healthy beverage choices for your children and family, contact please call our office:

Roseman Dental & Orthodontics – 702-968-5222

Roseman Dental – 801-878-1200

Author: Dr. Alice Chen, Board Certified Pediatric Dentist