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An Update on the Dangers of Soda Pop (AGD 150)

Presenter: Gary J. Kaplowitz, DDS, MA, MEd


Enamel is the hardest substance in the body, and it protects the crowns of the teeth. However, it is susceptible to demineralization from acids. Acids are produced when certain bacteria colonize the tooth surface and metabolize carbohydrates. If this process continues it may eventually lead to the development of carious lesions in the enamel and dentin. Many foods and beverages contain acids that also can lead to demineralization of the enamel.

Soda pop has emerged as one of the most significant dietary sources of acid capable of producing demineralization of the enamel. Many brands of soda pop also contain sugars that are fermented by bacteria that produce acid by-products. It also appears that soda pop contains other ingredients that produce demineralization independent of its acid content or fermentable sugars.1 The role of soda pop in the demineralization of enamel and its consequences should not be underestimated.


Dr. Kaplowitz retired from the military after serving as Chief Dental Officer of the US Coast Guard. He is a graduate of the New York University College of Dentistry and is a Diplomate of the American Board of General Dentistry. He has published widely in peer-reviewed journals on dental materials and clinical techniques. He is editor-in-chief of, an implant website, and is in private practice in York, Pennsylvania. He maintains a dental consulting practice in Baltimore for product development and research. He is a clinical associate on staff at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dentistry in the Department of Oral Medicine.


Upon completion of this course, the dental professional should be able to:

• Explain the frequency patterns of soda pop consumption by age.
• List the dental conditions associated with soda pop consumption.
• Recognize the clinical presentation of soda pop-induced enamel erosion and be able to identify patients who are at high risk for enamel erosion.
• Recommend preventive therapies for at-risk patients.


The ADAA has an obligation to disseminate knowledge in the field of dentistry.  Sponsorship of a continuing education program by the ADAA does not necessarily imply endorsement of a particular philosophy, product or technique.

The ADAA cautions participants taking this course on the hazards of using limited knowledge when integrating new techniques into their practices.

Credits earned upon completion of the course may be used to meet DANB’s Recertification Requirements.


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