A hard boiled egg’s shell is very similar to the enamel on a tooth. It protects the soft inside, or dentin, from damage. Unfortunately, some of our eating and drinking habits make it difficult for the enamel to protect our teeth from damage.
Try this experiment to help demonstrate to your child the damage soda can do to their teeth and why brushing after drinking it is important.
What You Will Need:
- 3 white-shelled hard boiled eggs
- diet soda
- a toothbrush and toothpaste
- 3 clear plastic cups
Start with a conversation with your child as to why it is important to have good oral hygiene. How it is important to brush 2x/day every day. Discuss how certain foods and drinks can stain, erode and damage their teeth
- What type of drinks do you think might hurt your teeth? (Answers may include: soda;coffee; juice; sports drinks.)
- What drinks might be better for your teeth? (water; white milk; sugar free beverages)
- Do you think brushing after drinking them helps reduce the risk of damage?
- Boil the eggs TIP: making sure to have a few extra in case some crack while you boil them.
- Help your child fill each of the plastic cups, one with regular soda (coke is best), one with diet soda and one with water.
There are a two main things you and your child can take away from this experiment. The first is that the acid in the soda has enormous potential to erode tooth enamel. The shell of the egg may crack or get small holes from this. (YUCK!)
The second is that it takes more than just a couple of quick swipes of the toothbrush to get teeth clean. Try helping your child time to see how long it takes to brush the majority of the stains of the eggs.