Do sugary drinks lead to tooth decay?

As a parent, it is important that you place limits on the amount of sugar your child consumes. Too much candy, sugar-added snacks, sodas, and even juices, can contribute to tooth decay. Tooth decay can be caused by bacteria left in the mouth that produces acid. Sucrose, fructose, and maltose are all forms of sugar that are consumed by bacteria in the mouth to produce high levels of acid. Too much acid int he mouth can cause tooth enamel to dissolve faster than saliva. Saliva is necessary for neutralizing the acid in the mouth.

Even juices that don’t have any added sugar are still a significant source of natural sugar that comes from the fruit they are made of. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, natural juices consumed by children on a daily basis should be based on the child’s age. The guidelines are as follows:

  • Under age 1 (or any child with abnormal weight gain): no juice at all;
  • Ages 1-3: no more than 4 ounces a day;
  • Ages 4-6: no more than 6 ounces a day;
  • Ages 7-18: no more than 8 ounces (1 cup) a day.

Many parents often wonder what beverages their children can have without worrying as much about tooth decay. Drinks that are less of a risk for tooth decay include low or non-fat milk, which is a good source of calcium, and of course, water.

It is critical for parents to take action and make sure their children aren’t facing tooth decay because of a high sugar intake. To speak with a dentist about preventing tooth decay, contact our office today.

Dental Associates of Basking Ridge is a compassionate, gentle, and professional state-of-the-art dental practice serving Basking Ridge, Morris & Somerset County. Our office is always ready to greet our patients with a smile, take the time to answer any questions, and provide the quality dental services our patients expect. Please contact us to schedule an appointment. We look forward to serving you! 


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