A team of Indiana dentists committed to ensuring the next generation of smiles has released a new app for elementary school children that visually illustrate the harmful content of sugar and acid in popular drinks.
“Drinks Destroy Teeth” uses lessons, video clips and suggested experiments to illustrate for fourth and fifth graders how harmful drink choices can impact their teeth. The kid-friendly app shows how acid attacks tooth enamel, the amount of sugar contained in popular beverages, and quizzes them on their knowledge as to those drinks that have unhealthy pH balances.
“It’s a phenomenon called acid erosion where acid actually kind of melts the enamel on teeth,” dentist Diana Buyers told Indianapolis’ WRTV Channel 6 when describing the harmful effects of many popular drinks. “And that’s because all the drinks, the soft drinks, the sports drinks and energy drinks, are acidic.”
The dental app created jointly in Indiana with Franklin College and Plow Digital also includes a 3D graphic depiction of sugar’s harmful effects on teeth.
“I talk to the pediatric dentists and they are seeing these (melted enamel) at 12 months,” Buyers said. “It’s destroying primary teeth. They need those primary teeth to talk, to eat, to be healthy.”
As Dental Wire has previously reported, sports drinks and energy drinks rate number one and number two for corrosiveness due to their high acid content. A healthy pH balance is a neutral 7.0, which is the same as water.
Soft drinks, sports drinks and energy drinks have a pH balance of 3.3 to 2.4, as the app depicts clearly in the section titled, “pH Science Lab.”
The average American drinks more than 53 gallons of carbonated soft drinks a year, says the Indiana Dental Association. The dental app targeting fourth and fifth grade students aim to change that by ensuring that the next generation makes more informed decisions on beverage choices than many of their parents have.
The “Drinks Destroy Teeth” app is free and can be downloaded at DrinksDestroyTeeth.org.
Sources: indychannel.com, drinksdestroyteeth.org
Photo sources: drinksdestroyteeth.org
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