Summertime is here, and many kids are out and about enjoying the sunny weather. If your kids are spending time at the swimming pool, the movie theater, or even the baseball diamond, there’s a high chance that they are consuming sports drinks. In addition to this worrisome drink, many kids also ramp up their consumption of sodas and energy drinks during the summer season. As a parent, it can fall on you to educate and influence your child’s beverage choices, as a diet high in sugars and acids can make it much harder to retain a healthy smile.
Alligator Dental is passionate about making the dentists’ office fun for kids of all ages! Our pediatric dentists in San Marcos and Seguin specialize in providing relaxing, professional dental care for our patients, offering age-appropriate amenities to make the appointment as fun as possible. From bubble walls and plays areas to our old-school arcade, your kid will find something they love at our location!
Our team sees an influx of visits after the summer season, as parents schedule evaluations to check the condition of their child’s smile. Before summer ends, be sure to catch up on our discussion of sports drinks and energy drinks. When you’re ready, feel free to make your appointment online. We look forward to meeting you and your child!
The Concerns of Sugary Drinks
As you have heard before, sugar is bad for your teeth! Sugary conditions in the mouth can provide the perfect food for cavity-causing bacteria. When left alone, these conditions become acidic, eating away at the enamel and allowing room for further deterioration to occur. Our pediatric dentists are passionate about your child’s health, and we will provide ideal care to minimize the long-term effects of sugar drinks.
Watch Out for the Acidity!
Many parents and kids are aware of the importance of minimizing sugar where possible, and may elect to choose low-sugar sports drinks instead. Unfortunately, these drinks can prove to be equally (and sometimes more) acidic. When left on your teeth, acid can begin to eat away at the protective enamel. This, combined with the cavity-causing conditions of sugar, should show why your dentist will advise against such beverages. Certain fruit drinks have been found to be more corrosive than battery acid!
While the rate of soda consumption is on the decline, many youths still seek out this sugary beverage for refreshment. Unfortunately, these carbonated beverages are full of acids in addition to sugar, creating a hostile environment for healthy teeth. Children who sip sodas often will see worse results, as continual exposure to these acids can have a big impact on the enamel. Diet sodas are just as acidic, so practice caution with your little one the next time they want a beverage!
The consumption of energy drinks has exploded in the past decade, as more brands are becoming available on a near-yearly basis. Adolescents and young adults are found to be among the heaviest consumers, increasing their intake of sugar and caffeine. A study recorded the information from nearly 10,000 teens and over 20,000 young and middle-aged adults in concerns to their energy consumption. According to the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (taken in 2003 and 2016), daily energy drink consumers rose from .2% of teens to 1.4% and young adults increased from 0.5% to 5.5%. This statistic is startling, especially when you consider how many teens are consuming energy drinks on a near-daily basis!
Many parents opt for sports drinks to keep their little ones hydrated during the hotter months. These beverages were created for athletes, but are commonly consumed by the public at large. Unfortunately, these low-sugar options are often packed with acids, causing damage to the finish of your little one’s teeth without their knowledge.
Unfortunately, the consumption of sugary, acidic drinks tends to be higher in children and teens because they simply aren’t worried about the consequences. Kids often do not consider the long-term consequences of unhealthy activities, and they may choose to ignore any worrisome signs. If your child has noticed any changes in their enamel (such as coverage or over-sensitivity), we recommend scheduling an appointment for immediate assistance!
Proactive Approaches for Parents
You want the very best for your little one, and you may be concerned after reading these statistics. Luckily, there is much that you and other parents can do to influence the habits of your kids, including scheduling regular visits with our pediatric dentists in San Marcos or Seguin! Alligator Dental strives to make proper oral care fun for kids of all ages, and we can provide guidance and supporting information to make the right changes in your family’s routine.
Your approach for dealing with unhealthy energy drinks and sports drinks depends on the age of your child:
- Younger children can benefit from dietary changes introduced by their parents. We recommend introducing healthier drink options (such as coconut water) to cut down on the acids and sugars present in sports drinks.
- Older children can benefit from education through parents and their pediatric dental specialists. You can offer alternatives to these drinks, or at the least provide guidance on minimizing the damage.
Is it Time for a Dental Checkup?
If your child has enjoyed their share of sugary and acidic drinks this summer, we recommend scheduling an appointment with your pediatric dental specialists for a proper inspection and cleaning. Alligator Dental is here to help kids across Texas smile with confidence, relying on our caring pediatric dentists in San Marcos and Seguin to make going to the dentist fun for patients of all ages!
Contact us today to schedule your child’s appointment!