Are Energy Drinks and Sports Drinks bad for your Teeth? :: Oral Health

A study published in the General Dentistry journal found that energy drinks and sports drinks both damage tooth enamel and boost the risk of cavities. And, just so you know , damaged tooth enamel cannot be fixed.

The sports drinks tested were:

  • Gatorade Rain
  • Powerade Option
  • Propel Grape
The energy drinks tested were:

  • Monster Assault
  • Red Bull
  • 5-hour Energy

These beverages, which are especially popular amongst teens and young adults, were tested for their effects on tooth enamel.

Researchers immersed enamel samples from extracted human teeth into three sports drinks and three energy drinks. These samples were immersed in the drinks for 15 minutes. Researchers then transferred the enamel to artificial saliva for two hours. This cycle was repeated four times a day for five days (with fresh drinks every day).

Researchers found that enamel loss was evident in just 5 days. The average enamel lost with sports drinks was about 1.5%, while the average loss with energy drinks was more than 3%.

Researchers also found the levels of acidity in the drinks to vary between brands and between flavors of the same brands. The energy drinks with the highest acidity include:

  • Red Bull Sugarfree
  • Monster Assault
  • 5-hour Energy
  • Von Dutch
  • Rockstar

Gatorade Blue had the highest acidity among sports drinks.

“The big misconception is that energy drinks and sports drinks are healthier than soda for oral health,” says researcher Poonam Jain, BDS, MPH, associate professor and director of community dentistry at the Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine. “This study completely disproves that, because they erode or thin out the enamel of the teeth, leaving them more susceptible to decay and sensitivity.”

Everyone, however, is not sold on the validity of the study. Tracey Halliday, a spokesperson for the American Beverage Association, takes issue with this study.

“This study was not conducted on humans and in no way mirrors reality,” she said.

If you have any questions about Dental Health / Oral Health, or wish to schedule an appointment, please contact Leikin & Baylin Dental Care of Catonsville, Maryland by calling 410-747-1115 or visit

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Energy Drinks: Bad for the Teeth?

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