Your favourite fizz could mean fillings – here’s some advice from Dr. Leah Smyth, new General Dentist at Smile Store.
“Most of the people I know love Prosecco. A lot of my own friends are really careful about what they eat and wouldn’t touch a fizzy soft drink because of all the sugar, but when they’re relaxing or at an event, the popular Italian sparkling wine is a delicious treat”, admits Dr. Smyth. “The bad news is that the combination of fruit acid and bubbles in Prosecco mean it can play havoc with your teeth”.
Popular bubbly does major damage
Prosecco became hugely popular in Ireland as a cost-effective alternative to pricey Champagne, and has a slight sweetness that people enjoy- it always contains fewer calories than traditional Champagne, if you needed additional excuses to pour yourself a flute.
But the fondness for prosecco is having a nasty effect on peoples teeth, especially women who wouldn’t dream of touching Coca Cola or Fanta, but don’t think twice about a glass of bubbly when they are out.
Prosecco contains about one teaspoon of sugar per 125ml flute – certainly enough to excite the harmful bacteria in your mouth that secrete tooth-decaying acids.
Another problem is that those delightful bubbles contain high levels of carbon dioxide, which are very acidic on the tooth’s surface and erodes away the enamel. This weakens the teeth and leaves them vulnerable to decay, and also causes obvious staining which grows worse over time.
The Italian grape used to make Prosecco has more sugar in it than a Spanish Cava, and apparently damaging drinks can leave a very evident trail of destruction.
Two front teeth hit first
“I can always tell if bubbly is the source of a problem “ says Dr. Smyth “as the front two teeth – the ones that come in contact with liquid first – are affected. Patients will complain of tooth sensitivity and notice some staining; maybe even pain. You can help combat the erosion by using an enamel-restoring toothpaste; rinsing out your mouth with water after you’ve had a glass of prosecco or simply switching your beverage of choice”.
Some people swear by using a straw to suck up the contents of their flutes, but the intelligent thing is to book yourself in for a dental check-up. You should have one twice a year so you can catch any problems before they become worse- or more expensive to treat.
Dr. Leah Smyth is now taking new patients, so to book your consultation and ensure you’re not sacrificing your dental health for a glass of bubbly, call 021 432 0004.