What Your Morning Coffee is Doing to Your Teeth - Pearly Whites Family Dentistry
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What Your Morning Coffee is Doing to Your Teeth

What Your Morning Coffee is Doing to Your Teeth

No doubt coffee is the kickstarter for your body’s engine. It’s what makes America run. We can debate all day about how coffee was discovered, whether it was Kaldi, an Ethiopian goat herder in the 9th century, or someone else; its effects are pretty universal. It allows us to function in this modern world. It has many positive benefits. I too, love coffee, and so does my team. I am by no means suggesting you stop drinking coffee. I will, however, suggest a few simple things you can do to save your teeth.

Most people drink it hot, some drink it cold. What it does to your teeth, however, is no joke.

Have you heard of this thing called thermal cycling? Basically, temperature affects all things differently, and changes in temperature changes the way objects behave. They will expand and contract depending on the temperature they’re subjected to. When you introduce a very hot or very cold liquid into your mouth, your teeth are the first to encounter this liquid.
This encounter will lead to small cracks and fractures of your enamels, and those cracks will take up stains. Imagine this effect times the number of years you’ve been consuming this addictive liquid. The ideal environment for your teeth would be to keep all things your teeth encounter at a cozy 98 degrees Fahrenheit. But c’mon, how fun would that be?

Variety is the spice of life and your mouth is the one place that really wants variety.

So one suggestion I give to my patients to get coffee in their mouth is to bypass their teeth with a straw. If you’ve ever drank something really hot with a straw, you’ll never do it again, because it goes straight to the tender parts of your throat and boy does it burn. So drink it not as hot, or drink it with ice. You can argue that some like it hot. I will argue that, in their case unfortunately, they will also have to contend with yellow cracked teeth. You’ll be surprised when you understand the effects certain things can do to your body, how easily it is to adapt to a new normal.

Of course, your teeth can’t escape being bathed in the dark liquid, but at least it is not assaulted with a drastic temperature change because your tongue and cheek do dissipate that temperature somewhat before the liquid hit your teeth.

So how do you minimize the stains?

Drink water immediately after drinking or eating something that could stain. I don’t recommend brushing immediately with toothpaste because the teeth have just been attacked by the acidic food, brushing it right away will brush away more tooth surfaces that’s been compromised because your saliva haven’t had enough time to neutralize the acid attack yet. Then occasionally, you can whiten your teeth to dissolve the stains coffee causes. These advices do apply to all dark and staining liquids like wine and cola.

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