The high acidity level in sports and energy drinks permanently dissolves teeth enamel after only five days of regular exposure, according to new research published by Academy of General Dentistry (AGD).The study, published in the May/June 2012 issue of General Dentistry, simulated consistent consumption by placing samples of human tooth enamel (i.e. the outer layer of the tooth) in 13 sports drinks and nine energy drinks for 15 minutes each and then soaking them in artificial saliva for two hours.
Researchers found that erosion of enamel began after five days, and energy drinks caused twice as much damage as sports drinks.
Enamel protects teeth against sensitivity, cavities and decay. If eroded it does not naturally grow back.
The U.S. energy drink industry is anticipated to reach a staggering $19.7 billion in revenue in 2013.
In a press release, AGD spokeswoman Dr. Jennifer Bone recommended that people minimize their intake of sports and energy drinks, chew sugar-free gum and/or rinse their mouths with water after drinking them.
She also advised that people refrain from brushing their teeth until at least an hour after consumption because doing so will increase deterioration by spreading the acid onto the surfaces of other teeth.
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