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February is National Dental Health Month!!!

Dr. Crissy Markova and the smile squad at VCO Orthodontics want to teach you about how to keep your teeth clean. The American Dental Association's theme this year is WATER! 

Please watch this video to learn more about WATER and how it can help with your teeth. 

Tooth Decay Egg Science Experiment: Grades 1-12

Background: Tooth enamel is tough but can be eroded by sugar in your beverages and acids in your mouth. Sugary beverages are not good for teeth as they stick to the surface and bacteria then break down the sugar to make acid, which can damage teeth. When tooth enamel is exposed to acidic beverages or acid generated by sugary beverages, it softens and loses some of its mineral content. Saliva helps neutralize the acid, restore the mouth's natural pH balance, and slowly harden the tooth enamel again. However, because the tooth's recovery process is slow, if the acid exposure happens frequently, the tooth enamel does not have the chance to repair. This can cause tooth sensitivity and lead to the need for dental treatment to protect the tooth and the dentin underneath.

Research Question: Can sugary or acidic drinks weaken teeth?

Materials: Since egg shells are similar to tooth enamel, examine hard boiled egg shells soaked for 2 days in drinks to see if the acid and sugar weakens tooth enamel. 

  • Hard boiled egg shells

  • 5 drinks - soda, energy drink (like Red Bull), sports drink (like Gatorade), orange juice, WATER (control)

  • 5 clear cups

Procedure:

  1. Label each cup with the drink

  2. Place egg shells in each cup and soak for 2 days

  3. Compare the eggshells in the 4 drinks and the "control" eggshells in water

Questions:

  1. Can you brush off the stains using a toothbrush and toothpaste?

  2. What happened to the egg shells that were soaked in sugary drinks? Acidic drinks?

  3. Based on the experiment, which drinks are best for your teeth?

Teeth Worksheets: Elementary School
Ted-Ed video on What Causes Cavities: Grades 1-12

When a team of archeologists recently came across some 15,000-year-old human remains, they made an interesting discovery: the teeth of those ancient humans were riddled with holes. So what causes cavities, and how can we avoid them? Mel Rosenberg takes us inside our teeth to find out.

Click on TED-Ed video link here to watch

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