Americans love coffee, and for good reason. The caffeine is an effective pick-me-upper that fires up the senses. While a cup of Joe certainly has its benefits, it’s not exactly the most dental-friendly beverage. There’s a link between coffee and dental health that goes beyond staining teeth.
Coffee Is Acidic
It’s not just lemonade and OJ that is acidic. Coffee can also be quite acidic and erode tooth enamel over time. Consider drinking through a straw and avoid swishing the liquid in your mouth. Most family dentists also advise rinsing your mouth, or better yet, drink a full glass of water afterwards. H2O dilutes the acid. It also keeps you hydrated – a big plus since caffeine is known to dehydrate the body.
It Causes Bad Breath
Drinking too much coffee may give you horse breath. Caffeine dries out saliva; without saliva, bacteria can build up and cause your mouth to smell like a landfill. Fortunately, foul breath can be remedied by popping in a mint or sugarless gum.
Coffee Destroys Plaque
While coffee isn’t the most oral-friendly drink, it’s not a total teeth destroyer either. In fact, it has a few perks. Coffee beans contain polyphenols, which studies suggest may destroy plaque. If you go heavy on the sugar and cream, however, then you nullify this benefit. Stick with pure black coffee.
Coffee Drinker or Not, Have Your Teeth Checked Out
Make an appointment with Mukilteo Dental Arts. Our cosmetic dentistry department can address discoloration caused by years of coffee consumption. Our endodontists also specialize in root canal treatment, which can occur from drinking too much coffee or other acidic drinks. In no way are we suggesting that you should stop consuming coffee. It’s just that you should be aware that there is a link between coffee and dental health, and it’s not all good.
Edited by Justin Vorhees
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