Is it true that if you leave a tooth/piece of meat/2p coin in a glass of Coca‑Cola overnight it will totally dissolve?

This is a popular urban legend, and totally untrue. Coca‑Cola will not dissolve teeth or meat overnight. There is a small amount of edible acid present in many foods, including fruit juices, buttermilk and soft drinks such as Coca‑Cola, but these foods are not acidic enough to harm your body tissues - in fact, your own natural stomach acid is more acidic. These stories continue to spring up and get recycled because each new generation finds them hard to ignore, but they simply are not true.

Any food or drink that contains fermentable carbohydrates (sugars and starches), including calorific sparkling drinks, can play a role in the development of tooth decay. Also, any food or drink that is acidic has the potential to play a role in enamel erosion. Through good dental hygiene and other health practices, you can help reduce the risk of tooth decay and erosion. The best way to protect teeth is to brush them twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste.

A family guide to good dental health

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