Tip Sheet: Teen Athletes & Oral Health

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Teen athletes are more likely to drink sugar-sweetened sports and fruit drinks than sodas, suggesting a belief that energy drinks are the healthier option. ¹ However, these drinks can still have a negative impact on oral health and overall wellbeing.

DID YOU KNOW? Sports drinks may contribute to tooth decay and mineral loss because of sugar and acid content.²

To keep a healthy mouth and body, athletes should drink beverages like Gatorade in combination with water after prolonged, vigorous activity. Limiting sweetened beverages will reduce the risk of tooth decay and help improve oral health.³ Thirsty during practice? Choose water.4

Healthy Tips for Teen Athletes

  • LIMIT consumption of sports drinks
  • DILUTE sports drinks with water
  • REPLACE sweetened drinks with water, low-fat milk, unsweetened tea

Oral Health America’s Campaign for Teen & Young Adult Oral Health strives to equip teens with the tools they need to make better decisions and ultimately have improved oral and overall health outcomes. Find out how to help teens to make healthy choices at:

¹Boyles, S. “Health-Conscious Teens Like Sports Drinks.”

²“The Truth About Sugar Drinks and Your Smile.” American Dental Association.

³“Sip All Day, Get Decay.” Wisconsin Dental Association.

4 “Are Sports Drinks Better Than Energy Drinks for Kids?” ABCNews. 5 “Healthy Soda Alternatives for Teens.” SFGate.

Posted in: News, Teen Health Week

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