Dentists in Indiana and across the country are raising new concerns about the sugar and acidity in popular energy drinks.
A new study published in the clinical journal of the Academy of General Dentistry found the acid in such drinks can start to destroy teeth after just five days.
"The acidity in these popular drinks is literally dissolving your enamel, and once the enamel is gone, it's gone forever," said Indianapolis dentist Dr. Diane Buyer. "You have a soft, fuzzy tooth. You add sugar to that, and you've got the perfect environment to create decay."
Energy drinks are popular among teens and young adults, but children are chugging them, too. Dentists said they're seeing a spike in kids with cavities who swig on the beverages.
Buyer uses a science experiment using an egg to show elementary students what an energy drink can do to their teeth.
"After 24 hours, the outside of the egg becomes soft and it actually peels away," she said. "Once you show them this stuff dissolves eggs, they put two and two together and say, 'Oh, this stuff is dissolving my teeth.'"
Still, despite the repeated warning, RTV6's Stacia Matthews
talked to some Indianapolis dental students prepping for final exams who admitted to turning to energy drinks.
"We're very well aware of how much acid erosion goes on in the energy drinks, but sometimes you've got to do what you've got to do to get you through the day," said student Elizabeth Cockrum.
For those who do throw back the occasional energy drink, dentists recommend they rinse their mouth with water afterward and wait an hour before brushing their teeth.
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