People tend to think that drinking something natural means that it can't do any damage to their teeth, but this is just not the case. The occasional tall glass of orange juice is fine, but it might be something that you want to cut down on.

Here are just three reasons why.

1. Orange Juice is Acidic

Liquids are almost always either acidic or alkaline; water is one of the few drinks that is neutral, which is why drinking it won't damage your teeth.

Orange juice, on the other hand, is quite acidic, as are most citrus juices. When your teeth meet acidic liquids, it causes a process referred to as demineralization; the tooth enamel is weakened and its surface becomes rougher. Scientific studies have borne this out; one piece of research found that orange juice significantly decreased the hardness and increased the roughness of tooth enamel. Any reduction in the strength of tooth enamel can make the tooth in question more vulnerable to decay. Roughness is also a concern since it makes it easier for staining compounds to gain a foothold and discolour your pearly whites.

2. Orange Juice is High in Sugar

Nearly everybody is aware of the fact that sugar is bad for your teeth. This is because sugars feed the bacteria which is present in plaque. When that bacteria is breaking down sugar, it produces a highly acidic by-product, and the strengthening of plaque is only going to make cavities and other forms of decay more likely to occur.

Though natural, orange juice contains a lot of sugar. In fact, experts estimate that a 12-ounce glass will contain 9 teaspoons of sugar, which is around the same amount that you'd find in a 12-ounce glass of Coca-Cola. Many orange juices will even contain additional sugar in order to further entice your taste buds.

3. Orange Juice is a Snack You Don't Think About

People often fail to think about the drinks they take as much as the food they eat; many a diet has been ruined when people don't understand that their loaded cup of coffee contains a huge number of calories.

The problem for your oral health when it comes to orange juice is that people will often have it throughout the day, not just with meals, without thinking of it as a snack. Exposing your teeth to food and drink at frequent points throughout the day should be avoided since that exposure weakens enamel. That doesn't mean you need to take all your nourishment during one huge meal, but it does mean that you should cut down on random snacking, and a glass of orange juice should definitely be considered a snack.

Talk to your dentist for more information on foods and drinks that can damage your enamel.