It's a hot day and a nice cold soda would taste good and quench your thirst … but it's a good thing your teeth can't talk because if they could they'd be yelling at you to put that soda down and drink water instead – it's a better thirst quencher and won't kill your teeth in the process.
Everyone knows that sugary soda is bad, but soda pop – sugared or in diet form – is as bad for you as any form of candy eaten consistently. Even worse, because soda is often the preferred drink, especially for teenagers, it can be addicting and harmful in large doses to overall health.
Soda consumption has increased dramatically over the past 40 years and teenagers especially get approximately 40% of their sugar/energy calories from soft drinks. In fact, according to surveys, kids today drink twice as much soda as milk.
Why is soda so bad? Quite simply, its contents include a high fructose corn syrup, additive dye, acid, and caffeine. An average can of soda has approximately 10-12 teaspoons of sugar.
But interestingly enough, it's not the sugar that causes tooth decay; it's the acid, which dissolves the calcium out of the enamel, making it easy for bacteria to enter and destroy the tooth. In addition, sugar is converted to acid by the bacteria on the teeth, which makes the problem worse. If the teenager has practiced poor dental hygiene along with drinking soda, the ramifications could be loss of teeth and other health complications.
Next time you're thirsty, think twice before you reach that can of soda. The better choice is to reach for a glass of water or milk. The water will help in many ways but most importantly, it won't cost you, your shiny, white teeth.