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Illume welcomes the ‘sugar tax’

Illume welcomes the fact that the Government has placed a levy on soft drink manufacturers to encourage them to reduce sugar content. Called the sugar tax by the media, the levy aims to reduce the number of British adults and children who are developing tooth decay or becoming obese as a result of excessive sugar intake.

A recent study showed that the new levy could help reduce tooth decay by around 270,000 cases every year. 

Tim Rumney, clinical director at Illume says: “Sugar, as we have been telling clients for many years, is the main reason for tooth decay because plaque on your teeth feed on this and acids are produced which dissolve the enamel of the tooth to create cavities. These acids are produced very quickly and can begin to damage the tooth within minutes.”

Under the new system, soft drinks containing more than 5g of sugar per 100ml will pay a levy of 18p a litre to the Treasury. If the sugar content is over 8g per 100ml, the tax will rise to 24p a litre.

Some leading brands have cut the sugar content of their drinks, which is a positive step towards tackling tooth decay in children and adults. The levy is estimated to raise around £240 million which will be used to fund sports in primary schools.

“This new levy is very much to be welcomed; improving the oral health of some children is important. However, sugary drinks are not the only problem, excessive consumption of sweets, chocolate, cakes and biscuits is also to blame,” added Tim.

If you are concerned about your oral health then please make an appointment for a Healthy Mouth Review and Hygiene Support Visit where, among many other things, we will assess how effectively you clean your teeth and identify any changes you need to make to your home oral care.