Drink Coffee Daily? You Might Want To Reconsider
Coffee seems to be a necessity for some of us, in order to get started with our day. It has become a morning ritual for many: Americans consume at least 400 million cups of coffee every day. Have you ever wondered how coffee can affect your teeth and what you can do to help?
Tannins in Coffee
Tannins, also present in red wines, are biomolecules abundant in coffee. The structure of tannins causes other compounds to bind and react with them, as well as sticking to your teeth.
The more coffee you drink (especially dark coffee) the more tannins you consume and the more yellow your teeth become. Coffee is not the only guilty pleasure that contains tannins. Tea, red wine and blueberry pie will also stain your teeth.
Now on to the good news! You don't have to give up your favorite beverage: there are teeth whitening treatments available and many tips which will help you reduce staining.
Bacteria Loves the Sugars in Your Coffee
Coffee, soda, milk, juice, wine, spirits, and water are the beverages we consume on a daily basis. From the list, water is the only one that will not hurt your teeth. Every beverage that is not water allows the bacteria in your mouth to feed on the sugars and produce acids as byproducts. If these acids remain on your teeth for a while, they can weaken the enamel that protects your teeth. With time teeth will become vulnerable to tooth decay.
One way to eliminate the acids that hurt your tooth enamel is to brush soon after having beverage or a meal. It may seem unnecessary, however this is why you should not sip those beverages throughout the day. Dentists recommend to consume beverage over a short period rather than over a few hours. You can drink as much water as you want, but you will be doing your teeth a favor if you drink coffee, soda and juices somewhat quickly.
Does Coffee Make You Clench Your Teeth?
The caffeine energizes us, and it also causes our heart to race and feel jittery. This is acceptable in the morning when you have a long day ahead to process the caffeine. For people who enjoy a cup of coffee before bed, this may have negative effects on your sleeping habits.
Drinking coffee in the evening can cause clenching your jaw. Not only is it harmful to your teeth, but it can also hurt your jaw and neck. Sleeping with a clenched jaw causes strain on your muscles and joints. As a result, you wake up with a sore jaw, neck and overall fatigue. Doctors suggest eliminating consumption of caffeinated beverages four hours before bedtime to prevent these problems.
Prevent Damage and Protect your Teeth
Dentists recommend to reduce coffee intake down to two cups per day. However, even one cup of coffee a day can cause damage to your enamel. Reduced beverage intake combined with other tactics will help protect your teeth.
Opt for a straw when drinking your coffee.
Choose black coffee with no sugar. Sugar and cream allow bacteria to grow faster and therefore cause more damage to your teeth.
Drink your coffee in one sitting, instead of drinking it throughout the day. Doing so will help minimize the damage.
After drinking coffee, brush your teeth get rid of tannins and bacteria. If you are not able to brush your teeth right away, snack on raw fruits and vegetables, for example oranges and strawberries.
Also, make sure to rinse your mouth with water, it will help to wash away some of the tannins and bacteria.
Coffee is great, however it's not doing your teeth any favors. Make sure to take preventative measures to keep your smile healthy!