June 15, 2020
The summer heat can leave you feeling dehydrated. However, there is a healthy, as well as a not-so-healthy way to stay hydrated under the scorching rays of sunlight. Many people turn to sports drinks in an attempt to replenish their depleted electrolytes. Unfortunately, these often contain added ingredients that can harm your oral health and leave you with an unexpected visit to your dentist. Read on to learn how you can stay hydrated this summer without putting your smile at risk.
The Main Ingredients in Sports Drinks
Sports drinks may be advertised as healthy beverages to replenish your electrolytes; however, they actually contain other ingredients that can impact your health as well. Some of the healthier components in these drinks include calcium, magnesium, chloride, and phosphate, while some more harmful ones are food dyes, sugar, and sodium. When you look at the overall pros and cons of each ingredient that’s commonly found in sports beverages such as Gatorade, you’ll learn that the cons outweigh the pros. Plus, there are other healthier options available to you if you’re looking for delicious and healthier ways to stay hydrated while you’re enjoying your summer.
The Effects That Sports Drinks Can Have On Your Oral Health
Frequent and regular consumption of sugary and acidic sports drinks can have an impact on your oral health if you’re not careful. Here are some issues that can develop from consuming these beverages:
- Tooth decay
- Gum disease
- Enamel erosion
- Tooth infection
- Dental sensitivity
It’s important to stay informed about what you’re putting into your body, because even products that are marketed as healthy can harm you. Intra-workout supplements and sports and energy drinks may seem like the best way to boost your drive to workout, but these lead to frequently exposing your mouth to sugar and acids that can put your teeth in harm’s way.
Staying Hydrated Without Risking Your Oral Health
Instead of turning to sports drinks and nutritional supplements that contain ingredients that can harm your smile, go back to the basics. Keep a water bottle on you at all times whenever you’ll be outside during the summer. Not only is it a sugar-free alternative to stay hydrated, but it also actually benefits your oral health by washing away food debris and bacteria. You can also use sugar-free water additives if you’re not a fan of drinking plain water. Depending on the brand and type that you choose, these also can contain caffeine and added vitamins to give you the extra boost that you get from consuming energy and sports drinks.
By sticking to the basics this summer and drinking water instead of sugary sports drinks, not only will you be able to keep your smile healthy, but you’ll also be looking after your overall wellbeing. That way, the next time you visit your dentist for a checkup and cleaning, you won’t have to worry about any surprise cavities.
About the Author
Dr. C.J. Landry has been practicing dentistry for decades and remains passionate about helping his patients optimize their oral health and take great care of their smiles. He focuses on providing high-quality preventive dental care, including checkups and cleanings, that tackle small issues before they have a chance to progress. For questions or to schedule an appointment, visit Lapalco Family Dental’s website or call 504-348-0080.
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