We hear it all the time, especially around the holidays. Sugar is quite possibly your teeth’s worst enemy. During the holidays, it is especially hard to avoid the temptation with cookies and candy around every corner. Even the drinks are filled with sugar! It’s inevitable that you will, at some point, consume a large amount of sugar in one setting. Knowing the risks of sugar makes it easier to moderate how much you eat, and when you do choose to indulge, you’ll know what happens next and hopefully head for the nearest toothbrush.
It isn’t enough just knowing that sugar is “bad for your teeth.” Here are a few quick facts about sugar consumption and how it damages your teeth.
Mind Blowing Sugar Facts
- The FDA says people should not consume more than 50 grams of sugar, or 10% of calories, per day. That’s 10 grams more than the amount of sugar in ONE can of soda.
- According to the American Heart Association, the average American consumes 70 pounds of sugar per year.
- Sugary drinks (soda, energy drinks, sports drinks) account for 37% of added sugars in the average American’s diet.
- American adults consume 65% of the candy that is produced each year.
- At least 50% of Americans drink one soda per day. That’s 55 pounds of sugar per year.
There are some health benefits with consuming a reduced amount of natural sugars as part of the digestion process. When people begin consuming three times the healthy amount of sugar per day, a problem arises – especially for your teeth. The bacteria in your mouth feed on sugar stuck to your teeth and then turn to acid. If you are consuming more sugar than you have time to brush off, the acid will begin to rapidly decay your teeth causing cavities. If the short-term cavities are not properly taken care of, the damage and acid buildup can lead to gum damage and eventually gingivitis, gum disease and serious infection.
The negative effects of sugar can be controlled through moderate consumption and a vigorous brushing routine. During the holidays, it can be hard to resist the constant offering of sweet treats, so it is important to drink lots of water between snacks and to regularly brush and floss your teeth. If you are in need of a deep cleaning to wash away all the holiday sugars, contact A Beautiful Smile at Lake Pointe in Houston, Texas to set up a cleaning & prevention appointment.