Find Out Just How Much Effect Hot Drinks Have on Your Teeth this Fall

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a fall tabletop with hot coffee

If you’re saying hello to the Fall season with the
popular Pumpkin Spice Latte, you’re probably not the only one. This common caffeinated
concoction has taken the world by storm, and while it may taste delicious and “warm
the soul,” it might also be wreaking havoc on your teeth. Find out if it’s time
to trade in your favorite Fall hot drinks
for better, more teeth-friendly options.

Ways Hot Drinks Can Harm Your Teeth

Whether it is a Pumpkin Spice Latte, Hot Chocolate or Apple
Cider that you prefer to help you get into the Fall spirit, these tasty drinks
can be problematic for your oral health. To answer the question, “Are hot
drinks bad for my teeth,” the answer is most certainly, yes, and here’s how:

Staining

Dark-colored beverages like coffee and tea can leave a trail
of stains and discoloration. While you might not notice it for quite some time,
you’ll begin to notice your teeth turning from a pearly white to a yellowish or
gray tinge over the years. Once these stains are set in, no amount of brushing
will lift them. This is why many people opt for teeth whitening.

Tooth Decay

Drinks that have high amounts of acidity or sugar can result
in tooth decay developing on your teeth. While coffee can stain your teeth, it
actually can protect your teeth from gum disease; however, the moment you fill
up that black coffee cup with cream and sugar, all bets are off. You’ve now
introduced a breeding ground for bacteria to build and burrow into the crevices
of your teeth. The same can be said for hot chocolate or ciders.

Ways to Keep Your Oral Health on Track

Whether you trade
in the hot brew for a cold brew or you simply cannot resist your hot beverage
of choice, there are steps you should take to keep your oral health in check,
such as:

  • Brushing
    your teeth twice a day for two full minutes. Make sure to use a fluoride
    toothpaste to protect from tooth decay and strengthen tooth enamel, and use a
    soft-bristled brush in a circular motion.
  • Floss at
    least once a day, or better yet, after every meal
  • Rinse
    with an antiseptic mouthwash at least twice a day
  • Keep
    your regular dental appointments every six months
  • Drink your
    coffee or tea with a straw to decrease the contact between your teeth and the
    liquid (This is only if you can’t resist your favorite Fall drink)
  • Try to
    limit or avoid as much sugar and acidic drinks as possible to lessen the
    chances of developing tooth decay or gum disease
  • Drink
    plenty of water after consuming any stain-causing beverages

Between the
pumpkins, leaves, and football, there’s no reason you can’t enjoy the Fall season.
Just remember to follow the above-mentioned tips to take care of your teeth and
gums. If your favorite drink is calling you, be prepared to keep a glass of
water nearby and your toothbrush and toothpaste ready to go. You’ll be glad you
did when that stain-free smile appears in all your upcoming holiday photos.

About the Author
Dr. Alex Martin studied at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. Continually educating himself on up-to-date dental procedures, Dr. Martin and his team strive to help patients look and feel their absolute best. From innovative and effective treatment plans to offering patient education to ensure proper oral hygiene and lifestyle habits are occurring at home, you can feel confident about placing your dental needs in Dr. Martin’s hands. To learn more, contact us at (480) 860-1993 or visit our website.

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