Q: Does diet pop do as much damage to my teeth as the sugary regular pop?
A: Yes. Even though diet pop does not contain sugar, it is made with two kinds of acid: phosphoric acid and citric acid. Both can be very destructive to your enamel, the hard coating that protects your teeth, and cause large amounts of tooth decay, especially when you’re sipping on the pop throughout the day.
Q: Does sugar really cause cavities?
A: Sugar does not cause cavities directly. The bacteria that normally live in your mouth use the sugar as a food source and when it digests the sugar, it produces acid. It is this acid that destroys the enamel and leads to cavities.
Q: What is a root canal?
A: Root canal therapy is necessary when the nerve inside a tooth dies due to deep decay, or trauma like a cracked tooth. When this happens, the inside of the tooth becomes infected and the best way to treat the infection is by performing a root canal. An opening is made in the top of the tooth and the pulp (or nerve) is removed and replaced with a filling inside the tooth canal.
Julie O’Neil-Johnson, DDS Charles Schindler, DDS Salvatore Lowry, DDS
Ohio State Student Health Services Dental Clinic