With all the information available today, you’d be surprised to find out which foods are bad for your teeth. If you’ve heard it elsewhere, you’re looking for a real answer to the question: is coffee bad for your teeth?
Well, the answer requires a little explanation to understand. Fortunately, that’s exactly what we’ll do in this article. First, we’ll explain just how complex the environment inside your mouth is.
The Inside Of Your Mouth Contains Multitudes
The fascinating thing about your teeth is that they’re not just bony implements inside your mouth. Teeth are complex living parts of your body, with sensitive nerves and blood vessels running through them. Coupled with other soft tissues of the mouth, such as the gums, palate, and tongue, a lot is going on!
However, there’s also unseen life inside your mouth: the millions of bacteria that form part of your oral microbial environment. But while healthy bacteria protect your mouth and prevent tooth decay, there are also harmful bacteria that feed on leftover food particles and cause cavities.
When these bacteria encounter different foods, they react to them differently.
How Do Different Foods Affect Your Teeth?
Many foods offer benefits for your overall oral health. Fruits and vegetables rich in fiber, for example, increase saliva production and help naturally keep your gums and teeth clean. This is also true for dairy products such as cheese, yogurt, and milk; the calcium content of dairy products helps remineralize and rebuild tooth enamel.
But some foods can cause harmful effects. Candies, sweets, and chocolates – particularly those high in sugar – are very attractive to harmful oral bacteria that feed on them and produce acidic waste. These acids can weaken and wear away tooth enamel.
Beverages such as coffee, tea, and carbonated soda are also acidic. The citric acid in fizzy sodas contributes to the weakening of tooth enamel. But what about coffee?
Is Coffee Bad For Your Teeth?
Coffee, indeed, can be bad for your teeth. It’s generally served hot, and it’s also consumed daily, sometimes multiple times a day. This can compound the acidic erosion of enamel, breaking down your teeth and causing staining.
It’s important to note that coffee itself does not cause decay – it simply makes it easier for the harmful bacteria in the mouth to compromise the enamel and cause cavities.
So what can you do? Should you stop drinking coffee altogether?
Conclusion: How To Enjoy Coffee Without It Affecting Your Oral Health
Luckily, there are ways to enjoy a cup of coffee without having it affect your oral health.
Cut down on consumption.
Try to limit your coffee intake to two cups a day.
Reduce the milk and sugar.
You’re better off drinking black coffee in moderation than combining it with cream and sugar. But if you enjoy your coffee with cream and sugar, try to reduce the amount, as the additives can cause increased plaque formation and bacterial activity on your teeth.
Maintain good oral hygiene.
Ultimately, this is what it all boils down to. Making sure you brush twice a day, use fluoride toothpaste, and floss regularly is best to keep disease and decay away.
Lonestar Dental Center is your complete oral healthcare destination for various dental procedures and comprehensive exams. We provide excellent service from the very beginning of your time with us in Humble, TX. If you’d like to schedule an appointment or have any questions, please give us a call at (281) 233-0333.