Coffee, one of the most popular beverages, is consumed by over 80% of adults in the US. When it comes to getting the day started, it’s a necessary part of the equation for many people. There’s a lot written today about both the positive and negative effects of your favorite caffeinated beverage. So how is your morning routine affecting your teeth?
When you think of coffee and oral hygiene, one of your first thoughts should be “yellow teeth”. Coffee has long been recognized for causing the enamel of teeth to become discolored. Coffee contains ingredients called tannins which are a plant based compound that allow stains to more readily stick to your teeth. Regular coffee consumption can lead teeth to become more yellow in color.
A Healthy Habit
Despite coffee’s unwanted cosmetic effects, it may provide more dental benefits than one might think. Coffee’s polyphenols can have positive effects on tooth health by acting to inhibit the production of teeth eroding acids and biofilms. Biofilms that adhere to tooth surfaces can wear away the tooth structures and cause permanent decay.
In addition to protecting teeth from decay, coffee has been found to have many systemic health benefits. Coffee has been found to:
- Boost metabolism
- Decrease risk of cancer
- Keep the mind sharp
- Prevent heart disease
While coffee can alter the appearance of teeth in a negative way, many beneficial side effects continue to be discovered. So, to enjoy that cup of joe and avoid oral damage, drink in moderation. Dentists suggest you drink no more than two cups a day, and follow up with regular brushing and water consumption.