Do you wake up and start your day with an espresso? Maybe even chat with a friend over a latte? While drinking coffee is a daily habit of many people, it can also have quite an impact on your oral health. If you’re noticing signs of stains and discoloration, it may be time to see a dentist in Lansdale.
The Effects of Coffee on Oral Health
A single cup of coffee can increase the amount of harmful bacteria in the mouth. This can increase the risk of cavities or tooth decay. Coffee is also a well-known culprit of bad breath. Consuming it in moderation is recommended, but it can still wreak havoc on your oral health.
Causes of Tooth Discoloration
Coffee is responsible for extrinsic tooth discoloration. Extrinsic refers to the outer layer of the tooth, known as the enamel. An ingredient in coffee, known as tannins, can bind to the enamel and alter the color of the tooth. Tannin is a type of polyphenol that breaks down when it interacts with water. The discoloration may begin at the back of the tooth and progress to the front.
With repeated exposure, such as a daily cup of coffee, the staining will become worse over time.
Ways to Reduce Discoloration
While it may be hard to kick your coffee habit cold turkey, there are ways you can help reduce potential staining. Some people drink coffee through a straw to keep the liquid away from the front teeth.
Drinking water immediately following coffee can also help rinse away and reduce residue. Brushing after coffee can also keep the tannins from penetrating the enamel. It’s best to wait 30 minutes after drinking coffee to brush, as the acid can soften the enamel, which can make it easy to damage the teeth while cleaning. Waiting allows saliva time to remove some of this acid so the enamel is nice and firm.
Professional Teeth Whitening
Luckily, professional teeth whitening can reduce stains and discoloration caused by coffee. Professional whitening is more effective than at-home whitening kits because it uses higher doses of an active whitening agent. This agent prevents saliva from accumulating on the teeth, so you can get the most out of your treatment.
EPIC Laser Treatment
This treatment requires a few short applications in the dental office. It’s quick and comfortable, and results are immediate. Custom at-home teeth whitening kits are also available to keep your smile on point. These kits also use professional doses of active whitening agents to brighten teeth within minutes.
While tooth discoloration is often inevitable, it doesn’t mean you have to avoid your favorite cup of joe. There are many fantastic whitening treatments that can restore your teeth to their pearly white condition in no time.
About the Practice
Brookwood Dental Associates has many experienced dentists on hand who are well versed in teeth whitening treatments. We offer safe, effective teeth whitening solutions that can brighten smiles as much as ten shades in as little as one appointment!
If you’d like additional information, or to schedule a cosmetic dentistry consultation, please call (215)368-2424, or you can also make an appointment through our website.