ost people can’t help but indulge themselves in a glass of wine or a cup of espresso. But many people don’t know the impact that these drinks can have on their oral health. Most of the time, a drink’s effect on your teeth depends on its acidity. Acidic drinks that have a pH of 5.5 or less can soften tooth enamel and make one’s teeth vulnerable to damage. Other drinks are actually healthy for your teeth and can improve their health.
In our latest blog post, Rosslyn Farms Dental Aesthetics, the leading dentist in Greentree, PA, examines the 9 best and worst drinks for your teeth.
5 Worst Drinks for Your Teeth According to the Top Dentist in Greentree, PA
Avoid Indulging in These Drinks on a Regular Basis
This probably won’t come as a surprise to most people, but soft drinks such as Coca-Cola, Sprite, or Root Beer can increase your chances of developing cavities and visible tooth decay.
Drinking soda often causes two detrimental health effects to your teeth: erosion and cavities. Erosion occurs when the acids inside these soft drinks come in contact with the tooth enamel, which is the outer protective layer on your teeth. The surface of the tooth enamel is softened as a result of their interaction.
However, sodas can also affect the next layer of your teeth, which is known as dentin. Sometimes, they can also reach composite fillings. This damage can make you vulnerable to developing cavities.
The obvious solution to this problem is to simply stop drinking soda. Of course, kicking this habit isn’t easy for everyone. If you do drink soda, avoid consuming more than one serving a day. Drinking quickly with a straw can also help keep your teeth safe from harmful acids. Remember to rinse your mouth afterward and wait 30 to 60 minutes before brushing your teeth.
Coffee is a necessity for most U.S. college students and workers. Unfortunately, it is also one of the worst drinks for your teeth. Because of the ingredients inside your coffee, known as tannins, this beverage can leave an undesirable yellow tint on your teeth. Coffee can also increase your risk of developing tooth and enamel erosion by attracting certain types of bacteria to grow in your mouth.
Cutting back on coffee is one of the most effective ways to prevent your teeth from developing stains or dental problems. However, many people aren’t willing to give up their morning energy drink. You can try to cut back on your coffee consumption to a single cup in the morning before switching to green tea later on for an extra caffeine boost. Remember to brush your teeth at least 30 minutes after you finish your coffee to prevent staining.
3. Iced Tea with Sugar
Sugary drinks like iced tea typically have a low pH of around 2.5 to 3.5. Because it is so acidic, iced tea can erode enamel, thereby increasing your risk of developing cavities or experiencing tooth decay. Most iced teas are loaded with sugar, which can also erode your teeth. If you find yourself craving tea, consider a healthier alternative like sugar-free green or herbal tea.
Wine can dehydrate your body as well as your mouth. This causes a condition known as “dry mouth.” Dry mouth can make patients vulnerable to the acid content inside a wine, as there is less saliva available to protect their tooth enamel. White wines tend to be more acidic than red wines. However, it is important to note that drinking red wine also puts you at risk of teeth staining.
To help neutralize the acids in the wine, remember to drink water during and after you finish your glass of wine. Rinsing your mouth afterward is also helpful. You will want to wait for a half-hour to brush your teeth. Brushing them too soon can end up spreading around the acid in your mouth.
5. Fruit Juices
Fruit juices are packed with sugar, which can increase your risk of tooth decay and cavities. They are also highly-concentrated and acidic. In order to lessen the sugar content and acidity in your favorite fruit juices, you can dilute them with water. A 50/50 mix of juice and water is usually appropriate. Avoiding them or reducing the frequency by which you can consume them will also help lessen your risk of developing dental health issues down the road.
3 Best Drinks for Your Teeth
The Leading Dentist in Greentree, PA Recommends These Healthy Drinks to Improve Your Oral Health
1. Green and Herbal Tea
Unlike black tea, green and herbal teas are not prone to leaving unattractive stains on your teeth. They also offer numerous dental health benefits. Green and herbal teas contain compounds that fight bacterial called polyphenols. However, you should avoid placing any sugar or honey in your sugar. These ingredients can end up canceling the benefits that polyphenols offer. If you need some type of sweetener for your tea, try adding sugar-free sweeteners.
Unsurprisingly, water is also great for your dental health! Not only does it keep you hydrated, but it also prevents dry mouth. If you do not have enough saliva in your mouth, you are vulnerable to the acids and bacteria present in your drinks and food. Drinking water can also flush out the remnants of any drinks or food inside your mouth.
Drinking milk can help you keep your teeth healthy and strong. Milk is an important source of calcium, an essential nutrient for healthy teeth and bones. Calcium is known to help rebuild tooth enamel in patients. The calcium and phosphorous inside this delicious drink can even replace minerals that were previously depleted from other foods.
Is your yearly dental check-up closely approaching? Our dental aesthetics specialists are here to fix your smile insecurities with an elaborately crafted smile makeover. Contact Rosslyn Farms Dental Aesthetics, the leading dentist in Greentree, PA, to schedule a consultation now.