A systematic review of dietary acids and habits on dental erosion in adolescents

Int J Paediatr Dent. 2020 Nov;30(6):713-733. doi: 10.1111/ipd.12643. Epub 2020 May 4.


Background: Dental erosion is the dissolution of dental hard tissues caused by acids of a non-bacterial origin. Dietary acids are considered the predominant and most controllable factor.

Aim: To synthesise the literature on the effects of dietary acids and habits on dental erosion in the permanent dentition of 10- to 19-year-old adolescents.

Materials and methods: An electronic literature search was undertaken in Cochrane, MEDLINE, CINAHL, Dentistry & Oral Sciences Source via EBSCOhost, and Embase with no restriction on the date of publication.

Results: The initial search identified 449 articles, and 338 remained after removal of duplicates. Seventy-seven articles remained after screening of titles and abstracts, and 52 were eligible for the full-text review. A considerable variety of beverages, food, and dietary habits were reported as risk factors for dental erosion. The most consistent findings implicated the erosive potential of carbonated beverages and the consumption of acidic drinks at bedtime.

Conclusions: Although results were not consistent between cohort and cross-sectional studies, this review suggests certain dietary risk factors may contribute to dental erosion in adolescents. There is a need for more high-quality cohort studies to establish more conclusive evidence on the role of dietary acids and habits on dental erosion.

Keywords: adolescents; dental erosion; diet; habits; permanent dentition; systematic review.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Beverages
  • Carbonated Beverages
  • Child
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diet
  • Feeding Behavior
  • Habits
  • Humans
  • Tooth Erosion* / epidemiology
  • Tooth Erosion* / etiology
  • Young Adult