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Big brands vow to cut sugar in anticipation of proposed tax


Draft legislation for the proposed sugar tax was published recently, in an attempt to tackle tooth decay, obesity, diabetes and other serious conditions. For dentists, GP’s and other health professionals this is a step in the right direction, suggesting positive movements towards change. However, for the big drinks companies this spells taxation, inconvenience and potential loss of profits.

Following the proposed tax, Tesco quickly responded by reformulating their own branded soft drinks to fall below the levy exemption limit. Any products containing more than the stated five milligrams of sugar per one hundred millilitres will be subject to the government tax. It is hoped that the legislation will be approved in parliament next year and put into practice in April 2018. Other big brands, such as Ribena and Lucozade, are set to follow suit, with plans in place to cut sugar levels by up to fifty percent to avoid taxation.

According to the Telegraph, figures estimate that consumption is at a high amongst teenagers, with a whopping 27 percent of their added sugar coming from fizzy drinks. Although all ages consume added sugar, it seems that this group is most at risk from developing related health problems such as diabetes and tooth decay.




Dentist’s dismay over Coca Cola truck visit to Wales


The famous Coca Cola truck is due to visit Wales in a matter of days, touring all around the country. With many of the public having expressed interest and excitement in going to see the truck, local dentists have a different view on the festivities.

The truck is synonymous with the yule tide season, due to many years of expensive marketing, advertisements, and promotion. Coca Cola have also played a big part in shaping the image of Santa over the years as a jolly, red coat wearing, present bringer. The issue that dentists have with the popular drink, besides the sugar content, is the acids levels that are present in them, even with diet Coca Cola there are still risks of enamel corrosion. The pH level of water is 7, which is neutral, however Coca Cola’s typical pH is between 2.5 to 4.2. Anything under a pH of 5.5 will destroy the tooth enamel over time.

Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University’s public health visitor, Jane O’Kane, had this to say, “We know that the acids in fizzy drinks erode tooth enamel which can lead to tooth decay. Our strong advice to parents is that children only need to drink water and milk, which have a neutral pH level in the mouth.”




Researchers say that the price of sweets should be increased


According to researchers, the price of sweets and fizzy drinks should be doubled to reduce tooth decay among children; there are calls for a 100% sugar tax to be added to soft drinks and confectionary in order to deal with an epidemic of cavities and dental problems currently affecting the public. It could also help with rising obesity levels and the associated health risks.

Recent figures have shown that 500 children are admitted to hospital every week with tooth decay and more than a quarter of youngsters have cavities. Although there are no plans to introduce such a tax, researchers at the London School of Hygiene and Medicine say that it is necessary to try and get dental decay under control.

Lead researcher Professor Philip James said that at least 20% sugar tax should be added and he said that schools should stop serving fruit juice and vending machines in public places should be done away with. Professor James said that ‘this would be simplest as a tax on sugar as a mass commodity, since taxing individual foods depending on their sugar content is an enormously complex administrative process. The level will depend on expert analyses but my guess is that a 100 per cent tax might be required.’

Dentists call for sugary drinks to be removed from schools


Leading dentists have called for all sugary drinks, including energy drinks, to be banned from schools to try and prevent or reduce tooth decay; a condition that affects around a quarter of children of school age. Crisps, sweets, and fizzy drinks have already been removed from schools run by the council but energy drinks have only been banned by two schools in the north of England so far, according to information from the British Dental Health Foundation (BDHF).

Dr Nigel Carter, chief executive of the BDHF said that sugary drinks were responsible for large amounts of dental decay among children. He called the changes at some schools ‘refreshing’ and added that ‘proposals such as the introduction of a duty on sugary drinks and brands reducing the amount of sugar in their soft drinks have both been mooted in the last twelve months. If we can build on these foundations, there will be an inevitable reduction in consumption and benefits for both general and dental health.’

A spokesperson for the Department of Education said that a review was currently being undertaken, designed to create ‘revised school food standards to make sure children are always served healthy, nutritional meals at school.’

Red wine and coffee ‘could lead to teeth whitening’


Consuming large amounts of coffee and red wine could lead to badly stained teeth which need cosmetic dentistry work.Those who drink red wine and coffee regularly have been warned that consuming large amounts of the drinks could lead to badly stained teeth which need cosmetic dentistry work.

Writing on the Bella Sugar page, one blogger said that as well as dark-coloured wine and strong coffee, some types of tea and fizzy drinks can also lead to stained and unsightly teeth.

However, the source noted that people may not want to go without their morning coffee pick-me-up or can of fizzy drink at lunchtime – so what are the options?

As well as undergoing cosmetic dentistry treatment such as teeth whitening or dental veneers, red wine and coffee drinkers should make sure they brush teeth well and use a whitening toothpaste. One designed to remove yellow stains from the teeth of heavy smokers could be ideal.

Also, occasionally swapping red wine for white could be worthwhile, and making sure dark-coloured fizzy drinks are consumed with a straw can help make sure the liquid does not come into contact with pearly whites.

Fizzy drinks ‘are as damaging to teeth as stomach acid’


Sugary drinks could be as likely to cause a need for emergency dentistry as stomach acid.   People who frequently consume fizzy drinks have been warned that they could be causing a need for emergency dentistry, as these beverages are as damaging to teeth as stomach acid.

The Vancouver Sun highlighted the case of teenager Kyla Kieltyka, who developed so many cavities that her dentist feared she was bulimic and had been exposing her teeth to acid when she vomited.

However, it was later discovered that she was actually a cola addict and had been drinking up to four cans a day from the vending machine at school.

Dr Kelvin Mah said that not only are such fizzy drinks acidic, but they also contain up to ten teaspoons of sugar per can.

He recommended that people should cut out fizzy pop altogether if possible, or significantly reduce it if not.

The expert also said it is a good idea to brush half an hour after eating anything sugary and to chew sugar-free gum to help get rid of any lingering acids.

A recent study by Tufts University professor of nutrition and oral health Carole Palmer found that people who consume sugary gym drinks slowly could be more at risk of tooth decay than those who drink them all in one go.

Last-chance syndrome ‘could result in emergency dentistry’


Could all those trifles and yule logs cause a need for emergency dentistry? Falling victim to last-chance syndrome could leave you vulnerable to needing emergency dentistry soon, festive revellers have been warned.

Writing for, dentists Michael Roizen and Mehmet Oz said this is the temptation to have a blowout on sweet snacks before the diet kicks in come new year.

However, they pointed out that the combination of sugar and starch in many foods at this time of year can be especially damaging to teeth.

"It creates a kind of superplaque that is up to five times harder, stickier and more acidic than the gunk (are we getting too technical here?) made without much starch," the experts explained.

To beat last-chance syndrome, Dr Roizen and Dr Oz suggested avoiding fizzy drinks in favour of cranberry juice which helps to neutralise acid in the mouth.

They also recommended always brushing and flossing before bedtime to cut the chances of decay.

Last month, scientists at the University of Rochester also recommended cranberries as ideal plaque-fighters thanks to the bacteria-fighting substances they contain.


Fizzy drinks ‘can damage teeth’


Fizzy drinks 'can damage teeth'Teeth can suffer long-term damage if people regularly indulge in high sugar drinks, a dental specialist has claimed.

Frequent exposure to the acidity in carbonated drinks can cause tooth enamel erosion, it has been warned, which can then lead to decay due to the high sugar content also found in the products.

Dr Nigel Carter, chief executive of the British Dental Health Foundation (BDHF), said: “Every time you eat or drink something sugary or acidic your teeth are under attack for a whole hour.”

He advised people to protect their teeth by limiting their intake of sweet drinks and chewing sugar free gum to help maintain good oral hygiene.

The comments come after a survey conducted by the BDHF found that of the 1,000 people questioned, one in seven respondents said they have a fizzy drink most days.

Men were shown to be the most likely to sample sugary beverages, with people aged under 30 classed as the worst offenders, with one in four admitting to having one regularly.

Brits were also recently advised by the foundation to be wary of smoothies, which are high in sugar content and can have a negative impact on oral health if consumed too often.ADNFCR-2621-ID-19837817-ADNFCR

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