Background: Diet is a major aetiological factor for dental caries and enamel erosion. Dietary habits are apparently changing with modernization. Fresh fruits consumption has tons of benefits but on the other side fresh fruit juices and beverages are acidic in nature and saliva is one of the factors for dental caries. Objectives: To assess and compare the salivary pH, flow rate and oral clearance rate between packaged fruit drink and fresh fruit juice among dental undergraduate students. Methods: This clinical comparative study was conducted among dental undergraduate students (n=90) at Rajarajeswari Dental College and Hospital, Bangalore. The study subjects were divided into three parallel groups and were given, Group A: Pineapple fruit juice with sugar (30), Group B: Pineapple Fruit juice plain (30) Group C: Packaged fruit drink (30), respectively and then unstimulated saliva samples was collected immediately,5,10 and 15minutes respectively after the test juice consumption. Salivary pH, flow rate was measured at each interval and oral clearance time was estimated. Results: The maximum pH drop was observed with packaged fruit drink group immediately after consumption (5.28±0.44) as compared other groups and the salivary flow rate increased after their consumption and was found to be statistically significant (p<0.001). The oral clearance rate of pineapple juice without sugar was found to be the least at (9.73±1.55) and was maximum in packaged fruit drink group (16.63±1.35) (p=0.001). Conclusion: A regular consumption of pineapple juice with sugar should be reduced and packaged fruit drink should be discouraged among young adults as it is found to have cariogenic and erosive potential.
Keywords: fruit juice, salivary pH, dental erosion.