BDA Calls for Ban on Sales of Energy Drinks to Kids

Dentistry Today


The British Dental Association (BDA) is joining a campaign to ban the sale of energy drinks to consumers under the age of 16 in the United Kingdom. Other advocates include the Daily Mirror, ministers of parliament, teachers, and celebrities such as Jamie Oliver, all urging the government to take action and “make sugar the new tobacco.”

“They are habit forming, highly acidic, and can come laced with 20 teaspoons of sugar—far more than a can of Coke,” said BDA chairman Mick Armstrong. “Tooth decay remains the number one reason for hospital admissions among children and young people. Ministers like to talk about prevention. They can prove it by calling time on the sale of energy drinks to kids.”

In 2016-2017, hospital procedures to remove multiple teeth from patients age 18 and under in England cost more than £36 million. The campaign is concerned with the damaging effects of the drinks on oral health as well as their impact on weight, concentration, and school behavior. Many larger retailers in the United Kingdom require identification before these drinks can be purchased, but youth under the age of 16 can still buy them at smaller convenience stores.

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