One of the most popular beverages in the United States is coffee, with approximately half of all American adults drinking it on a regular basis. Whether cozying with a warm mug or sipping an iced drink on the move, many individuals consider coffee to be a staple in their routine.
However, coffee can have detrimental effects on the appearance and health of your teeth and gums. Dr. Melvin Benson, a dentist in Greeley, CO, describes how you can protect your oral health while drinking coffee.
Beware of Teeth Stains
Coffee gets its dark color from tannins, which have the potential to absorb into tooth enamel and leave stains over time. This discoloration cannot be removed with oral hygiene practices like teeth brushing.
Choosing a lighter-colored brew or adding milk to your beverage might lower the risk of teeth discoloration when drinking coffee. The risk is not eliminated completely, so dentists suggest enjoying coffee in moderation. If you notice yellowing, staining, or discoloration in your teeth, you can ask your dentist about professional teeth whitening treatment.
Skip Added Sugar
Coffee has a bitter taste on its own, so many coffee drinkers add sugar to their beverage to make it taste sweeter. Sugar is notoriously bad for your teeth, however, because it reacts with bacteria in your mouth to become acidic.
The acid eats away at tooth enamel, leaving your smile vulnerable to problems like tooth decay. Once enamel weakens, it cannot regrow, and you may require restorative dental treatment to protect the underlying layers of your teeth. For this reason, you should avoid added sugar wherever possible, including in your coffee.
Many coffee enthusiasts appreciate the boost of caffeine that comes with drinking a cup of coffee. Caffeine has the tendency to dehydrate you, which can have detrimental effects on your overall health, including your mouth.
Low hydration levels can leave you with dry mouth, which allows bacteria to spread more easily across your teeth and gums, raising your risk for oral infections like gum disease. To counter this side effect, you should drink plenty of water with your coffee.
Schedule a Dentist Appointment Today in Greeley, CO
Integrated Dental Arts offers professional teeth whitening and other dental treatments to patients of all ages. Dr. Benson is a dentist who specializes in restorative, implant, cosmetic, and general dentistry for patients in Greeley, CO. To schedule an appointment with us, contact our office online or reach us by phone at 970.281.5972.