Kingsport Dentist Blog

One Dentist's War on Mountain Dew

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You can’t go to any supermarket, gas station, or convenience store without it seeing it. In an instant, you can recognize the green and red logo that is found on every Mountain Dew. 

Originating from Tennessee in 1940, Mountain Dew was eventually bought by Pepsi-Cola in 1964. Since then, there have been variations in flavoring and color. But unfortunately, one thing hasn’t changed: how it irreversibly destroys teeth.

The Harmful Effects of Mountain Dew on Teeth

In dentistry, we have actually coined the name “Mountain Dew Mouth” to describe patients who have completely destroyed their teeth by bathing them in the Dew.

The combined acid and sugar bomb literally eats away at teeth. Many times, composite fillings, root canals, and crowns can’t save the teeth.

Far too often, I have seen teenagers in the Kingsport area who have grown up on Mountain Dew. After years of ingestion, along with irregular dental check-ups, many teens come to us once it’s too late.

If Mountain Dew has taken its toll on a smile, the only option is to extract all of the teeth and have complete dentures. Luckily, implant dentistry can help many patients' smiles return to functioning normally. However, these dental procedures cannot distract focus from the main problem.

Why is Mountain Dew Unhealthy?

In one 12-ounce can, Mountain Dew has 12 teaspoons of sugar and a pH of 3.3 – this is very acidic. Battery acid has a pH of 1.1, in comparison.


The citric acid in Mountain Dew softens teeth, extracting the calcium components from teeth. The refined sugars in the soda feed bacteria (Streptococcus Mutans), which produces acid that further breaks down teeth.

Here is an example that shows how harmful Mountain Dew can be. A few years ago, a man filed a lawsuit against Pepsi, asserting there had been a mouse in his can of Mountain Dew when he opened it! In Pepsi-Cola’s defense, they said the mouse body would have dissolved by that point.

Hold on.

So what they're saying is the drink is so caustic that it will melt mice? How can this drink be legal for consumption?

Side Effects of Drinking Mountain Dew

When it comes to overall health, Mountain Dew has been linked to the following directly or indirectly:

  • Cardiovascular diseases

  • Dysfunction of the thyroid gland

  • Cancer of the reproductive organs

  • Changes of the pancreatic beta cells

Basically what I’m saying is this: Mountain Dew is an epidemic.

If you or anyone you know and love drinks Mountain Dew, please encourage them to stop. This doesn't just go for Mountain Dew, but for all types of soda – Coke, Dr. Pepper, Sprite, and more. Here is a list of common soft drinks, along with their sugar and acid content.

 

Do I have mountain dew mouth?

Mountain Dew Mouth is a real phenomenon, and it’s more common than many people think. Some individuals are completely unaware of what symptoms to look for when it comes to Mountain Dew Mouth. A few of the most common symptoms/signs of Mountain Dew Mouth are: 

  • Stained teeth

  • Tooth decay

  • Sensitive teeth

  • Cavity formation

  • Weakened enamel

 

Should I stop drinking soda?

Although there have been many opinions about which foods and drinks are good for our overall health, there has never really been any question regarding soda. It will come as no surprise as to how bad soda is for your teeth and your body as a whole. Should you stop drinking soda? We recommend, yes. If you choose not to take our advice, we encourage you to keep up with a very strict oral hygiene routine alongside visiting your dentist every six months.  

 

How can I avoid Mountain Dew Mouth?

Mountain Dew Mouth is easily preventable with good oral hygiene and healthy habits. Although sodas are known for giving individuals Mountain Dew Mouth, there are also other factors that play into it as well. 

Choose Healthy Drinks

One easy way to avoid mountain dew mouth is to simply choose healthier drink options. There are a multitude of healthy drink options out there that will work for your teeth instead of against them. Although you may have a habit of picking up a soda during the day, work on switching up your routine with other healthy options, including:

  • Water 

  • Milk

  • Green tea

  • Vegetable juice

Oral Hygiene Routines

At Bateman Dentistry in Kingsport, we recommend brushing and flossing twice a day for many reasons, one of them being to prevent the damage sugary drinks like Mountain Dew can cause. If you are indulging in sodas and sugary drinks, it’s even more important for you to have a healthy oral hygiene routine. Failing to take care of your teeth and gums can result in severe Mountain Dew Mouth. 

Schedule Regular Checkups

Regular dental checkups are vital to keeping your oral health in check. Not only will these checkups allow your teeth to receive a good deep cleaning, but we can also help identify any existing or potential issues you may be experiencing. Allowing your dentist to routinely check your teeth can help prevent further damage from occurring down the road. 

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Your Kingsport, TN Dentist: Here for You! 

With the many patients we see each day, it is becoming more common to see irreparable destruction of teeth because of harmful soft drinks. It’s time to buck the trend!

If you, a family member, or friend relies on drinking sodas like Mountain Dew, now is the time to make a change. Switching to healthier options like flavored, sparkling water or even juices can make a huge difference in the care of your smile. 

Along with taking Mountain Dew and other sodas out of your diet, it is important to visit our dental office regularly. Dental visits should occur twice per year, every six months, so we can help you stay ahead of cavities and deeper tooth decay problems. 

You only have one smile: take care of it! Call us today to find out how we can help you and how to start making healthier, smarter decisions for your smile. 

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