Caffeine and Dental Health: Love and Hate Relationship

Coffee is a great way to start the day. Most people would grab a cup of Joe first thing in the morning as a daily routine. It doesn’t stop there. A second and a third might come in handy throughout the day. Like any food or drink that pass through your mouth, this daily habit has an effect on your dental health. The frequency and the amount of caffeine you drink have an impact on your body and teeth. The good thing is that you don’t have to say goodbye to old habits completely. There are ways you can lessen the bad effects of caffeine.

Coffee and Teeth Staining

Your tooth’s enamel has microscopic pores just like your skin. These pockets get easily blocked by stains making your teeth appear yellowish. Having yellow smiles are directly related to your coffee fix especially if you regularly drink them. The best way to avoid tooth staining would be to stop drinking coffee. But for those who actually need the extra help of coffee to get through the day, there are many ways to prevent staining. You can start off by drinking coffee and incorporate it into a meal or breakfast to stop sipping throughout the day. After drinking, always wash it all down with water and brush your teeth. You can chew on crunchy vegetables and green leafy veggies that are rich in fiber to polish your teeth as a snack throughout the day. Regular dental cleanings also help on removing unwanted stains on your teeth.

Bad Breath

Coffee can also affect the acid level of your mouth. The coffee also inhibits production of saliva that is your mouth’s way of naturally keeping your mouth’s ph level balanced. Without saliva that washes away bacteria and acid in your mouth it turns dry. Bacteria loves the acidic environment and can proliferate which is why you get a bad breath. Always brush your tongue to remove food particles and remnants of coffee after drinking.

Teeth Erosion

Like mentioned by , coffee is acidic, and this is bad news for your tooth’s enamel. Acidic foods tear away the hard covering of the tooth that makes it weak and prone to tooth decay and sensitivity.

The Good Side

Not everything about coffee harms your teeth. In fact, coffee has polyphenols that fight off plaque forming bacteria. But you need to drink coffee without cream and sweeteners. The benefits of polyphenols only come in black coffee. This is great news for people who love strong black coffee. Two cups of coffee a day is a good number to get your java fix and keep your teeth healthy at the same time.

Always remember that moderation is always the key whether it is coffee or other sugary drinks. You can always use straw and other techniques to avoid contact with your teeth. You can enjoy your cup of Joe as long as you regularly visit your dentist to keep those pearly whites sparkly and clean.