It’s is not just for Dad’s work thermos anymore. Coffee culture has invaded America. What once was just a morning jump start, is now served on every corner any time of the day. Espresso, Mochalatte, Americano, and even good old fashioned Waffle House joe. We love it!
But what is all that coffee doing to our teeth?
At Overmeyer Family Dental we want to help you keep your teeth looking bright. Providing quality cosmetic dentistry to Orlando is only part of what of what we do. We are just as concerned with preventing damage to your smile to begin with. And part of that is making sure that you know the effects, good and bad, your favorite drink has on your teeth.
Coffee and Your Enamel
The enamel of your teeth is the hardest material in your body, but that doesn’t mean it is invulnerable. Your enamel is covered with microscopic pits that trap particles of food and liquid, so when dark liquids like coffee get trapped in those pits they can stain your teeth, causing them to take on a dark yellowish tint.
You may have heard that mixing cream in your coffee will keep it from staining, but the pigment that causes the stain is still there, even when it is mixed with cream. So unless you are putting significantly less coffee in with your cream, the risk of staining is same.
The staining power of coffee can be counteracted by drinking plenty of water and brushing after drinking coffee.
Benefits of Coffee
Studies have shown that roasted coffee beans have and antibiotic effect on the bacteria that cause tooth decay. This means that drinking coffee, even though it can stain your teeth, may decrease your chances of tooth decay.
This is big news for coffee lovers, but don’t get too excited yet. There are some conditions.
The tooth decay fighting properties of coffee only apply to coffee with nothing added. Coffee may be good for your teeth, but sugar definitely is not. There is no surprise there. So if you’re loading your java up with sugar, syrups, creams, and sweeteners, then you’re inviting decay. If you want to fully reap the benefits of coffee, you have to take it black, no sugar.
What We Can Do
So on one hand, coffee stains your teeth. On the other, it can help prevent tooth decay. It would be nice to protect your dental health while enjoying a hot cup of black coffee, but you don’t want to darken your smile.
Don’t worry. We can help.
You can try whitening your teeth with over the counter whiteners, but the simple truth is they are just nowhere near as effective as a professional treatment. OTC whiteners do not contain enough peroxide to get your teeth as white as professional whiteners do. Also, when you administer the treatment yourself, you run the risk of putting too much on, or leaving it on for too long, which can cause chemical burns on your gums.
When you come to Overmeyer Family Dental, we will make impressions of your teeth to custom build whitening trays specifically for your teeth. These trays will be filled with just the right amount of whitening gel to safely get your teeth to the shade you desire.
Come into our Orlando office for an examination and we will see if our teeth whitening program is suitable for you. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.