Plaque is formed by the natural bacteria that live in your mouth. When you eat, the bacteria uses the sugars in your food and drinks to produce acids. Water is said to have a pH of 7, and the more acidic things get, the lower the pH gets. There are minerals in your saliva that help repair damaged enamel, but only when the pH is above 5.5. When it drops below that level, tooth structure starts to break down. The longer you can keep the pH up, the less decay and erosion you will have. One of the most notorious sources of acid exposure in our diets comes from what we drink. Most sodas are closer to battery acid than they are to water. That doesn’t even take into account the acid produced by your resident bacteria when they feast on the sugar in many of those drinks. If you are going to have an acidic drink, it is best to drink it in a short amount of time, and follow it with spring water to help dilute and buffer the acid. Even this step requires some attention because many bottled waters (especially filtered water) has a pH in the low 4’s!