Your sweet tooth may be a sugar hound when it comes to finding sugars in places like candies, cakes and soft drinks … but beware! There are tooth decay-causing sweets hidden in places you may never have even considered. Take medicines for example. Many drugs, both over-the-counter and prescription, contain sugar, especially cough syrups and lozenges. Even vitamins and antibiotic syrups can hide anywhere from 10-75% sugar. That’s plenty enough to cause decay. Ever wonder why breath mints taste so good?
Unless they say sugar-free, half of what you are sucking on may be sugar. Antacid tablets are another guilty sweet. They range from 10-50% sugar. You might as well have some candy. That’s not all. Sugar isn’t always called sugar. Many products contain sweets sugar-coated in exotic sounding names. Check labels for words like turbinado, invert sugar, coupling sugar, sorghum and cane syrup, corn syrup, fructose, glucose, galactose and lactose, honey, and raw or brown sugar. They’re all really the same thing … sugar!
If you’re serious about eliminating dental disease from your life, you’re going to have to rely on more than your sweet tooth to avoid sugars. Regular brushing and flossing helps. Read food labels carefully. You may even want to pack a magnifying glass so you can make out the small print. If you do eat anything that contains sugar, rinse your mouth immediately and brush as soon as possible.