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does Gatorade cause cavities? [nm](5 posts)

does Gatorade cause cavities? [nm]komatiite
Apr 13, 2003 5:32 PM
Does sugar cause cavities?Kerry
Apr 13, 2003 5:39 PM
Of course it does, and Gatorade has sugar in it, so the logical conclusion would be? However, it is not as hard on your teeth as Coke (or any other acidic soft drink - AKA nearly all of them). Any product containing sugar, including candy, gum, etc. etc. will cause cavities. Haven't you been paying attention in hygiene class?
Actually, it's not the sugarspeedisgood
Apr 13, 2003 5:52 PM
that causes cavities directly. When plaque digests sugars thru anaerobic metabolism, acid is produced. Acid leaches calcium out of teeth (think chicken bone in vinegar).

So yes, brush your teeth after rides that involve a carb drink.
Sucrose causes plaque ...Humma Hah
Apr 13, 2003 7:59 PM
The double sugar sucrose causes plaque. The bacterium _S. mutans_ produces an enzyme called dextran sucrase that links the glucose part of sucrose into the polymer dextrose, aka postage-stamp glue. That cements the bacteria and their friends onto your teeth, where that acid production is concentrated and does the most damage.

The best strategy is to get the placque off your teeth as soon as possible. Chewing sugar-ree gum helps, as does eating apples or other fiberous stuff that tends to strip it off. And, of course, brushing, flossing, etc.
Oh, yea...MLCrisis
Apr 14, 2003 5:57 AM
Yep, sports drinks are a double-whammy when it comes to tooth damage. As a dentist, I see lots of young athletes with major tooth decay problems from these.

In addition to the simple sugars, these drinks (along with carbonated beverages and fruit juices) are notoriously acidic, too. If you partake, it is always good to have something to chew along with them and especially afterward (sugarless gum between meals or food at mealtimes). The extra saliva (that the chewing produces...) contains buffers to neutralize the acids (from both the drink and the bacterial byproducts) and also contains minerals that actually can replace those lost from the tooth surfaces as a result of the acids.

Stimulated natural saliva is far more effective in righting the wrongs of acid attacks than simply rinsing out with plain water or even brushing (actually brushing with an abrasive toothpaste right after acid exposure is VERY destructive to teeth...)

Drinking sports drinks when your mouth is very dry (usually the case, right?) is the worst of all worlds for your teeth.