With Houston schools in full swing, we wanted to briefly review some helpful tips about sports drinks to our student athletes in Fort Bend and Harris County school districts.

Play Hard, Drink Smart

Sports drinks are popular among young athletes – they are promoted by popular professional athletes and advertised heavily. However, sports drinks are sugary and acidic so these “harmless and healthy” liquids can actually put your teeth “on the bench”.

The combination of acidic components, sugars, and additives in sports drinks combine to dissolve the tooth’s surface, weakening the enamel that protects teeth from bacteria. This ultimately makes teeth more susceptible to bacteria and that can lead to sensitive teeth, staining, and cavities. So it’s critical to limit the amount of sports drinks that your child or young teenager consumes during sports.

Brushing Teeth

Don’t have your student athlete brush his/her teeth immediately after finishing a sports drink. All that acid and sugar from the sports drink has made the teeth weak and susceptible to more wear from the gritty indredients in toothpaste. Wait 45 minutes to an hour before brushing. In that time, saliva will start its work to re-mineralize the tooth structure and neutralize the damage. Saliva won’t remove the sugar residue, so you still have to brush.

Regular Dental Visits Are Important

Most children should see their dentist for a regular cleaning and check up every six months. Dental cavities are the most common chronic childhood disease, five times more common than asthma.  Untreated cavities can cause pain, tooth loss, and be quite expensive to treat. Fortunately, many cavities can be caught when they are very small with routine dental x-rays and checkups.  If your child needs a dentist in Houston, Dr. Eric Choudhury and Dr. Alma Payumo can help identify early cavities and offer solutions on how to prevent further damage and more serious problems from occurring.