People around the world enjoy coffee on a regular basis. More than half of all American adults consider a cup of coffee to be a staple in their daily routine. But many people do not realize that coffee can pose risks to the health and appearance of your smile.
With advice from your dentist, you do not have to cut your favorite drink from your diet to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Dr. Shannon French, a dentist serving patients in Bladenboro, NC, lists three ways you can preserve your smile without giving up coffee.
Tips for Oral Health Preservation from Coffee
Watch Out for Tooth Discoloration
Coffee gets its dark color from substances called tannins. These tannins can absorb into the enamel of your teeth as you drink coffee regularly. This will leave your teeth with discoloration that cannot be removed with your typical oral hygiene regimen.
Though you may add milk to your drink, sip through a straw, or use a lighter-colored brew, you will not eliminate the risk of staining your teeth entirely. Limit your consumption of this beverage and pay attention to your smile to avoid this discoloration. If you notice stains, yellowing, or dullness in your smile, ask your dentist about teeth whitening treatment.
Avoid Added Sugar in Your Coffee
Coffee tastes bitter naturally, so many coffee drinkers add sugar to their beverage to enhance its flavor. But sugar is notoriously harmful to your dental health. It reacts with natural bacteria in your mouth to become acidic.
The acidic environment then eats away at your tooth enamel, wearing this protective layer of the tooth down and heightening your risk for cavities and other dental problems. Dental professionals recommend avoiding added sugar wherever possible, including in your coffee, to protect the structure of your teeth.
Drink Water Along with Coffee
One of the appeals of this beverage is the caffeine boost that comes with drinking a cup of coffee. A side effect of caffeine consumption is dehydration, a state which poses a threat to many systems in your body, including your mouth.
Low levels of hydration will decrease your saliva production, leaving you with an unpleasant condition called dry mouth. Not only does this sensation feel uncomfortable, but it could hurt your oral health.
Dry oral conditions allow bacteria to spread more easily across your teeth and to your gum tissue. You could be at a greater risk of contracting periodontal disease.
This gum infection can lead to irreversible damage to your smile, such as tooth loss. You should reduce the chances of developing this problem by drinking plenty of water along with your coffee so that you stay hydrated.
Find More Oral Health Tips from Your Dentist in Bladenboro, NC
Bladenboro Family Dentistry offers professional teeth whitening services, cosmetic dental treatments, and more to patients of all ages. Dr. French is a highly skilled dentist in Bladenboro, NC who specializes in general and restorative dentistry, including tooth replacement solutions. To schedule an appointment with our practice, contact our office by phone at 910.469.4592 or reach a member of our staff online.