More than half of American adults drink coffee. Whether enjoying a warm mug or an iced drink on the go, coffee is a popular beverage.
Coffee is also notorious for negatively impacting your dental health, but there are ways to appreciate your drink while taking care of your teeth. Lanier Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, a dentist office in Buford, GA, offers advice on drinking coffee while preserving your oral health.
Protect Your Smile While Drinking Coffee
Beware of Tooth Discoloration
Dark-colored beverages, like coffee, contain tannins that absorb into tooth enamel and leave stains on your teeth. Once absorbed, this discoloration cannot be removed with teeth brushing.
You can add milk to your drink or choose a lighter-colored brew to lower the risk of staining, yellowing, or discoloring your teeth while you drink coffee, though the possibility is still there. If you notice tooth discoloration, you can talk to your dentist about professional teeth whitening treatment.
Skip Added Sugar
Coffee is a bitter drink on its own, so many coffee drinkers add sugar to enhance the taste of the beverage. Sugar can be bad for your teeth because it reacts with bacteria in your mouth to become acidic and eat away at tooth enamel. This can lead to cavities, and tooth decay can ultimately result in tooth loss.
Brushing your teeth directly after drinking coffee may worsen this effect because the pressure from brushing can further weaken thinned enamel. To best protect your teeth while drinking coffee, it is a good idea to skip adding sugar.
Many individuals enjoy the caffeine boost that accompanies a cup of coffee. Caffeine tends to dehydrate you, and low hydration levels can be detrimental to your health in many ways, including your oral health.
Dehydration can leave you with dry mouth, leaving room for bacteria to grow freely and raise your risk of infection in your gums. When you have coffee, be sure to drink plenty of water along with it to prevent these health concerns.