We all know that sugary foods and drinks are bad for us calorically, but pediatric dentists are also finding a substantial amount of children experience tooth decay as a result of diets that are high in sugar.
According to the CDC, 42 percent of children ages 2 to 11 have had cavities in their baby teeth, and 21 percent of children ages 6 to 11 have had them in their permanent teeth. Back in 2012, an article in The New York Times reported that the level of decay was so severe that dentists often recommend using general anesthesia because kids are unlikely to sit through extensive procedures while awake. Yikes.
And get this: In March 2016, a 3-year-old boy in New Zealand had to undergo 11 teeth extractions because of his tremendously high sugar intake. In Appalachia, which stretches from southern New York to Alabama, soft drinks like Mountain Dew are resulting in the region’s dangerously high rate of teeth decay, which is referred to as “Mountain Dew Mouth.”
But it’s also a double-edged sword. Dentists encourage parents to keep kids away from soda and sugary foods, but that doesn’t mean sugar-free alternatives are any better for dental health. Scroll down for more information…
Recently, a mother in New Zealand made the mistake of filling her toddler’s sippy cup with soda. As a result, Dr. Robert Beaglehole had to extract eleven of his teeth!
In one year alone, Dr. Robert Beaglehole extracted nearly 60 teeth from fear different children. He, in addition to the The New Zealand Dental Association, suggested parents adopt a water and milk-only policy. But the problem isn’t only in New Zealand…
According to Vermont Dentistry, “Sugar laden soft drinks and snacks are available for consumption everywhere that children gather. Schools allow the presence of commercial candy and pop vending machines, as do after school activity venues, and many middle and upper class homes keep a handy supply in their refrigerators and cupboards to satisfy their child’s sweet tooth.”
In Appalachia, which stretches from southern New York to Alabama, soft drinks like Mountain Dew are resulting in the region’s high rate of teeth decay, which is commonly known as “Mountain Dew Mouth.” According to ABC, kids are addicted to soda and drink it all day long — in the cafeteria, at football games, and with dinner. Dentists even speak about families who put soda in baby bottles.
Experts say it is critical for parents to enforce daily tooth brushing, regular flossing and routine dental check-ups. Just because a food or drink is labeled “sugar-free,” however, doesn’t mean it’s good for your teeth.