If you saw our last post “3 foods to Avoid for Healthier Teeth” you may be hungry for more. In that post, we discussed 3 of the foods that cause a large amount of enamel wear to your teeth from both sugar and acid.
This time, though, we’ll be focusing less on food that you chew and more on drink. Many times, when you think about the substances your teeth come into contact with you tend to think more about food that you chew. It’s no surprise really, that’s probably because your teeth are made for chewing. However, liquids that come into contact with your teeth can have quite an impact as well.
So why don’t we look at a few of them?
You probably don’t need to be told that soda isn’t good for your teeth, and that the sugar can contribute to cavities. You might be thinking, “But I drink sugar-free soda so I’m okay, right?”
You might be surprised to learn that it’s not just the sugar in soda that’s bad for you, it’s actually the acid. Even sugar-free sodas contain the same enamel-eroding acids present in regular sodas.
If soda simply isn’t something you can’t do without, just follow this one tip: drink it with food. Instead of drinking soda by itself, drinking it while your eating allows the food to help counteract the acid and minimize the time your teeth are exposed to the acid.
It says “Sports” on the bottle and sports are good for you, so that must mean that sports drinks are good for you too, right?
While sports drinks might seem appealing if you feel like something fizzy and sweet, the truth is that they aren’t a whole lot better for you than a soda. Your classic “thirst quenchers” and “energy drinks” that advertise their ability to give you greater energy and endurance are just as acidic and full of sugar as the soda that your dentist already told you to avoid.
In fact, a recent study by the University of Iowa College of Dentistry proved that “sports drinks” like Gatorade and Red Bull caused even more enamel wear than soda. After 25 hours, “enamel lesion depths following beverage exposures were greatest for Gatorade® followed by Red Bull® and Coke® which were greater than Diet Coke® and 100% apple juice”
Ah wine. For many of us, a nice glass of wine can be the perfect complement to a long day (or an early night). But chances are, if it’ll stain your white shirt — it will also stain your teeth.
On top of this, wine also contains tannins. Tannins, are an element in wine (and many other substances). In wine, tannins give some of the “dry” flavor, but are also used in substances that have historically been used to give leather it’s dark color — hence the reason the practice is called “tanning”. Tannins also have a tendency to dry out your mouth and make your teeth sticky, which will worsen the staining process.
Coffee and Tea
If you’re a coffee or tea drinker and you’ve ever noticed stains developing on the inside of your ceramic coffee cup — think about what those drinks can do to your teeth. Many of our in-office teeth whitening patients at our Garden Grove dental practice are avid coffee and tea drinkers, which isn’t surprising. Think about it. The ceramic of a coffee cup isn’t much different than the enamel of your teeth, and if you’re not careful — the same brown stains can develop on your teeth. Just be sure to brush and drink plenty of water and you’ll be able to ward off stains much more effectively.
Do You Have Questions? We’re here to help
At Primary Dental Care of Garden Grove our dental team has answered practically every question there is when it comes to teeth. If you’re in the Garden Grove or Anaheim area and are curious about your teeth, schedule an appointment with our friendly dental team today.