September 23, 2019
Now that it’s fall, the weather is getting colder and colder. It seems like the perfect time to enjoy pumpkin spice lattes and other hot drinks, doesn’t it? However, before you take a sip, you should take the time to ask, “Are hot drinks bad for my teeth? And if they are, how can I keep my pearly whites safe while still enjoying my favorite beverages?”
How Hot Drinks Affect Your Oral Health
Depending on what kind of hot drinks you enjoy, over a long period of time they can cause problems such as:
- Staining: Dark-colored drinks like coffee and tea are often the culprits behind tooth stains and discoloration. The hot liquid enters the pores of your teeth and grabs hold once it cools down, which is why they can change the color of your teeth over time.
- Tooth Decay: Sugar increases your risk for cavities, and since hot drinks stick to the teeth once they cool, it might stay in your mouth far longer than it should. Pumpkin spice lattes and hot chocolate often have sugar as an ingredient, and it can be added to coffee and tea.
- Bruxism: Coffee and other hot drinks have high levels of caffeine. According to several studies, too much caffeine can raise your stress levels and leave you more likely to clench and grind your teeth. Not only will this cause serious jaw pain, but it’ll also wear down your pearly whites.
- Bad Breath: Pretty much any kind of drink besides water might get stuck to your tongue and contribute to bad breath.
How You Can Save Your Teeth from Hot Drinks?
The obvious solution for avoiding the negative effects of hot drinks is to never have any, but odds are that you probably don’t want to do that. At the very least, you should only drink potentially harmful beverages in moderation and pay close attention to how often you have them. When possible, use a straw when drinking anything besides water; that will greatly decrease the amount of time the potentially harmful liquid is touching your teeth.
You should clean your teeth as soon as possible once you’re done with your beverage; the longer leftover particles are left on your teeth, the greater the chance they’ll cause stains. If you can’t brush your teeth right away, try drinking a class of water instead; that will help wash away harmful substances in your mouth.
If you still have concerns about what hot drinks might be doing to your teeth, talk to your dentist about your oral health and what kind of preventive steps you can take. Remember, you don’t have to give up the comfort of your pumpkin spice lattes, but it pays to be aware of what they’re really doing in your mouth so that you can save your smile for tomorrow!
About the Practice
At the Painesville Dental Group, we go out of our way to make sure that our patients – adults and children alike – stay as comfortable as possible while we work to protect the health, appearance and function of their smiles. We have four convenient locations where you can get high-quality, comprehensive care from one of several highly trained and experienced dentists. To schedule an appointment, visit our website or call (440) 354-2183.
No comments yet.
Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.