January 11, 2021
The mouth and body are closely connected. Everything you eat and drink can positively or negatively impact your teeth and gums. To avoid the potential for cavities or periodontal disease, there are items you should limit or eliminate from your diet. Read on to discover more about the link between beverages and oral health in Wichita Falls and why regular dental checkups and teeth cleanings can mitigate the potential for more serious oral health problems in the future.
Which Beverages Can Harm Your Teeth?
Fruit juice, wine, soda, sports drinks, tea, and coffee – all of these beverages can have a significant impact on your oral health. Because juices, wine, soda, and sports drinks are highly acidic and often contain elevated amounts of sugar, they can easily break down tooth enamel and cause cavities to develop. The bacteria that forms as a result of these drinks can begin to work quickly, causing you to undergo restorative treatments like dental fillings, crowns, or more advanced solutions like root canals or tooth extractions. The type of restorative care you need is largely based on how long you allow the decay to remain untreated.
Although coffee and tea do not contain the same levels of acidity and are often less harmful than soda, fruit juice, or wine, it is the additives that you incorporate into your drink that make coffee and tea bad for your oral health. Adding sugar and creamer can be just as damaging as drinking any of the other mentioned beverages, resulting in tooth decay.
Other damaging drinks include beer, sparkling water, and fruit punch. It’s important to do a bit of research to learn more about the pH levels of these beverages to determine how harmful they can be to your teeth.
Ways to Ensure Optimal Oral Health
If you want to avoid stains, discoloration, tooth decay, and the potential for timely and costly restorative and emergency procedures, here are a few helpful tips to keep your teeth strong and healthy:
- Use a straw. If you cannot resist that cup of coffee in the morning or afternoon soda, use a straw, as this will limit the contact the liquid has with your tooth enamel. Also, try to avoid sipping on it slowly.
- Minimize your sugar intake. When it comes to your morning coffee, do not add sugar. While it may take some time to get used to, your teeth will be better protected from the bacteria that can feed on sugar and eat away at your enamel.
- Drink plenty of water. Consuming enough water throughout the day will not only keep you hydrated, but it will also help your salivary glands to work at an optimal level while also flushing out any bad bacteria from within your mouth.
- Brush or rinse after consuming a beverage. Should you choose to drink coffee, tea, soda, juice, or wine, make sure to brush thoroughly or rinse your mouth immediately after you finish your beverage.
- Maintain regular dental checkups and cleanings. By seeing your dentist every six months, you can stay on top of your oral health and alleviate the potential for decay to advance over time. Your dentist can easily detect early signs of decay before it progresses beyond the enamel, so making sure you are keeping these appointments will safeguard your smile, your time, and your wallet.
Knowing which drinks to consume and which ones to avoid can go a long way in maintaining optimal oral health. If you want additional tips on what you can do to achieve healthier teeth and gums, don’t hesitate to reach out to a member of your dental team.
About the Author
Dr. Majid Sharolli is a trusted dentist in Wichita Falls who has more than two decades of clinical experience. Completing his Doctor Dental Surgery degree at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, he provides high-quality, exceptional dental restorations and treatments to individuals looking to improve their oral health and function. At Wichita Falls Dental, he and his team believe in quality over quantity and are pleased to offer helpful tips and recommendations that will prevent decay and gum disease as well as improve oral health and increase confidence. If you are looking for a dentist near you who can provide optimal care, visit our website or call (940) 322-5297.
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