Our O’Fallon Dentists Explain How Daily Coffee Consumption Can Alter Your Smile Over Time
When patients start to notice oral health changes, our O’Fallon dentists are here to help them build treatment plans, so that they can refresh and rejuvenate their smiles. Sometimes, small tweaks and improvements to a patient’s daily oral hygiene routine can make a big difference over time. Today, we’re going to be talking about how you can consume coffee smartly to minimize its effect on your smile.
We all know that coffee is a somewhat staining substance. So, as you expose your smile to coffee over and over again, your dental enamel can accumulate color deposits; your teeth may start to look dark or stained as a result.
To minimize coffee’s staining power, you may want to start drinking your coffee through a straw. Using a straw allows you to consume coffee without fully coating your dental enamel in it. This simple switch can keep your smile looking fresher longer.
It may also be helpful to vigorously rinse your smile with water after you finish your coffee. This has dual benefits: you clear away the film of coffee on your teeth and gums, while also jump-starting saliva production. Saliva works to re-mineralize your teeth and freshen breath, so you want to keep in flowing!
Coffee, like any drink other than water, can feed oral bacteria; the same oral bacteria that contribute to cavities as well as gum disease. Black coffee is the least harmful version for you to drink. When you add milk, sweeteners, and flavors to black coffee, you give oral bacteria more sugars and refined carbohydrates on which to feed.
Coffee is technically a slightly acidic beverage, though it isn’t as potent as fruit juices and sodas, for example. Even so, you might want to wait twenty to thirty minutes to brush your teeth after your morning coffee. Brushing your teeth too soon after acid exposure can actually lead to dental damage and enamel thinning, as your enamel is temporarily softer during this period of time.
As always, our O’Fallon dentists are here to answer questions you may have about caring for your smile at home, as well as making smart dietary decisions. Call our office to schedule a personal consultation, or use the Contact Us page on our website to reach out to our team!