Are you like most people who must enjoy a nice, hot cup of coffee first thing in the morning? Not only does it smell enticing, but its jolt of caffeine helps you to kickstart your day, right? While it may get you going on your way to work, the unfortunate reality is that its contents can remain on your teeth long after you’ve finished your first cup. Unless you’re prepared with a glass of water or your toothbrush, this delectable beverage can wreak havoc on your smile, leaving behind stained, yellow teeth. A local dentist explains why it may be time to break up with your coffee and what you can do to minimize discoloration over time.
The Effects of Coffee on Your Teeth
Coffee is known for its many great health benefits. When not packed full of creamer and sugar, it contains high amounts of antioxidants and is capable of boosting your energy as well as reducing your risk of infections caused by toxins in your body. However, as good as it may be for your overall health, it can leave an unwelcome impression on your teeth.
It is believed that just one cup of coffee can increase your risk of bad breath and cavities. It can also cause teeth staining because of a certain ingredient – tannins. These are compounds that are typically found in dark-colored beverages, giving them a somewhat bitter taste. Coffee, tea, and wine are the most common drinks that contain tannins. Because they can attach to sugars found in coffee, they can cause stains to develop over time. Not to mention, the sugars can turn into harmful acids that penetrate the tooth enamel and cause cavities to form.
If the top layer of your tooth becomes thin because of erosion, you will notice a yellow or brown color begin to appear, which is the dentin that lies beneath the enamel. While brushing your teeth will help to remove surface stains, it will take teeth whitening in Arlington to blast away discoloration found deep within the dentin layer.
Ways to Minimize Stains
The best way to avoid stains altogether is to simply stop drinking coffee and avoid other dark-colored beverages. If you’d prefer not to give up your morning cup, there are ways you can minimize the potential for discoloration and keep your teeth brighter and whiter. You might try the following tips to ensure a more beautiful smile:
- Use a straw when drinking coffee or tea, as this will minimize the amount of contact between your teeth and the beverage.
- Do not sip or drink it on and off throughout the day. This practice can cause additional bacteria to build up.
- Drink plenty of water, especially after consuming coffee, tea, wine, or any other darkly pigmented food or beverage.
- Brush your teeth, if possible, 30 minutes after drinking your cup of coffee to remove any surface stains.
- Incorporate hard or raw vegetables into your diet (i.e., carrots, celery) to help remove stains and food particles from your teeth.
By taking these extra steps, you can still enjoy your morning cup of joe without worrying about stains affecting the look of your smile.
About the Author
Dr. Douglas Baldwin and the team at Foundation Dental Solutions are here to deliver transformation cosmetic services. When it comes to removing stains and discoloration, he can provide professional teeth whitening. In no time at all, you can see a noticeably different smile that looks and feels better than before. He uses high-grade bleaching gel to blast away coffee teeth stains, leaving you with a whiter, brighter smile that you can feel confident showing off to friends and family. If you are ready to do something about your discolored teeth, contact us at (817) 478-4300 to schedule an appointment today.