The Great Dental Debate: Is Coffee Bad For Your Teeth?

February 14, 2023 - By Bruce Michaelson
The Great Dental Debate: Is Coffee Bad For Your Teeth?

Coffee, in general, has been a rather controversial topic in the dental world. If you are particularly someone who can”t imagine starting their day without a cup of coffee, then you probably might wonder if it”s any good for your health.

The truth is that coffee is not always bad; it can boost energy to start the day, improve cardiovascular health, boost liver function, cleanse the stomach, and is also rich in antioxidants. However, their effect on the teeth may be slightly alarming, requiring you to limit your intake and, if not possible, follow a strict dental hygiene routine.

This article will list more on this topic and all you need to know about the exact connection between coffee and dental health.

Coffee Stains Teeth

No sugar-coating is necessary; yes, black coffee will stain your teeth. Coffee has “Tannins,” a type of polyphenol (these are micronutrients found in plant-based foods) that break down in the water. Tannins make color compounds stick to the teeth, leaving an unwanted yellow color behind, resulting in stains.

Now, many need to understand that it”s just not coffee that causes this stain. Red wine, black tea, dark-colored juices, soft drinks, berries, beetroot, tomato sauce, balsamic vinegar, and soy sauce are all food that can stain your teeth, just like coffee.

On the other hand, black coffee is quite acidic, so if you drink a lot, it can actually weaken the enamel protecting the teeth. This creates the perfect environment in your mouth that”s more conducive to bacteria growth, easily leading to tooth decay and even gum disease.

Lastly, adding sugar can actually worsen the effects of coffee on your teeth, as it increases the potential to cause tooth decay, as it fuels the decay-causing bacteria in the mouth. Avoiding sugar or sticking to artificial sweeteners can combat this effect and reduce teeth stains from coffee.

The Affect Is Not That Significant With Proper Oral Hygiene

The truth is that coffee doesn”t stain your teeth so seriously. In other words, the overall base color of your tooth is not significantly affected by external staining. These stains can easily be removed during your six-month teeth cleaning at your dentist. Proper oral hygiene with brushing twice a day and flossing can further reduce the effects of staining.

If you feel you have dark and deeper coffee stains that won”t just go away no matter what you do, you can still reverse them and restore those pearly white teeth with professional-grade best teeth whitening treatments.

How To Drink Coffee Without Staining The Teeth

The color of your coffee decides how deeply it stains the teeth. So try to add some milk to your coffee and dilute the concentration of coffee. Similarly, your teeth will stain only if the beverage actually touches the teeth, so switching to a straw can prevent stains to a great extent.

This may sound easier said than done, but limiting your coffee consumption is another way to avoid teeth stains. Avoid switching to alternative drinks like herbal tea or hot-flavored water.

You can also consider eating crunchy fruits and vegetables like apples, carrots, and celery that boost saliva production and scrub your teeth naturally, helping to remove stubborn stains.

Lastly, using a better toothbrush, like an electric one, may actually be more effective than regular brushes in removing stains, plaque, and bacteria. However, remember that coffee is acidic and softens the tooth enamel. So give at least 15 minutes after drinking coffee to brush your teeth, giving the enamel enough time to re-harden.

Alongside these, try to make it a regular practice to follow the oral care routine advised by your dentist or dental hygienist. If the stains are highly visible, they may suggest the best and most customized treatments to resolve this issue.

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