Coffee is one of the world’s most beloved drinks. Coffee can be enjoyed both cold and hot. You can add as much sugar and milk as you want or none at all. Coffee is not only a part of most people’s morning routines, but it’s part of many cultures. Whether you are enjoying a cafe Americana in the United States or sipping on a small cup of espresso in Europe, coffee can be enjoyed in a multitude of ways.
While businesses like Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts have made coffee almost an essential daily beverage, what kind of damage is it doing to your teeth? Does coffee stain your teeth? The short answer is yes it does. It’s almost unavoidable – if you drink coffee on a consistent basis, you will notice that your teeth aren’t as pearly white as you would like for them to be.
It’s currently estimated that we drink over 2 billion cups of coffee daily all around the world. That’s a lot of coffee beans that are being brewed up for people to enjoy. Despite the fact that coffee does stain your teeth, it feels as if we wouldn’t be complete unless we got our daily cup of Joe in the morning.
Why Does Coffee Stain Your Teeth?
What is it about this delicious beverage that causes teeth to stain? Let’s consider that coffee is a very dark and hot beverage. This allows the drink to get embedded in the tiny pores your teeth have easier. Didn’t know your teeth had pores? They do. And when the hot coffee gets into your teeth, it stays there once it gets cold. Most people brush their teeth in the morning, go off to have their cup of coffee, and don’t brush until night time. This allows coffee to sit on your teeth almost all day, which means it makes a home for itself in the pores of your teeth.
Because coffee is also acidic, your teeth weaken as a result. Any acidic food, such as lemons, oranges, and such has the ability to weaken your teeth over time. The acidity tears away at that enamel over your teeth to expose the dentin layer of your teeth – which by nature is more yellow in appearance.
Tips and Tricks to Prevent Staining
It’s probably too much to ask people to stop drinking coffee – most people cannot function at work unless they’ve had a cup of the good stuff. This is why we’re going to go over the tricks and tips that you can follow to prevent staining or at the very least, make your teeth whiter.
Get Yourself a Better Toothbrush
Believe it or not, the kind of toothbrush you have does make a difference. Use a brush with stiff bristles that can actually scrub away the residue of coffee that’s left on your teeth after drinking it. Many people go with softer bristle brushes because it feels better, but it’s not doing the job your toothbrush is supposed to do.
Brush Your Teeth After Drinking Coffee
As mentioned before, many people often brush their teeth in the morning and don’t brush their teeth again until night time. Change your brushing habits to include brushing your teeth after drinking coffee. You can do this at home or buy a portable toothbrush and toothpaste to carry around with you so you can do this in the bathroom at work. If you don’t have the ability to do this, it’s suggested to swish some mouthwash after drinking coffee.
Use a Straw
If you’re drinking iced coffee, you mostly do so with a straw. But, if you’re drinking hot coffee, still drink it with a straw. This is to help prevent the coffee from hitting your teeth. When you typically drink from the lip of a cup, the coffee is splashing against your teeth and remaining in your mouth before you gulp. By using a straw, you’re bypassing the teeth and going straight down. This helps prevent staining and if you buy yourself a metal, portable straw, you won’t ever be without one.
Try To Find Coffee With Less Caffeine In It
We live in a world where Starbucks has popularized getting a cup of coffee with three double shots of espresso in it to give us the pep we need to get work done. But, not only is added caffeine bad for your heart, but it’s bad for your teeth as well. But drinking decaf (which still has a percentage of caffeine in it) or drinking half-decaf coffee, you’re reducing your caffeine intake. Which, reduces the damage that coffee does to your teeth.
Add Milk To Your Coffee
There are some people out there who enjoy drinking their coffee black. Whether they simply like the taste better or don’t want to use dairy, they drink it black. However, this isn’t good if you’re trying to reduce the damage coffee does to your teeth. By adding milk, you’re reducing the intensity of the dark beverage. If you’re someone who does not want to use dairy due to health reasons or ethical reasons, there are plenty of non-dairy creamers out there that taste good and help prevent staining of your teeth.
You Can Still Enjoy Coffee
This article has probably felt like a PSA for not drinking coffee, but this isn’t what we’re saying at all. Enjoy your cup of coffee. Drink it happily, however, you like to drink it. However, if you are looking for a reason as to why your teeth aren’t as white as you want them to be, understand that your coffee habit is responsible for this.
By following the tips and tricks listed above, you can maintain your pearly whites. If damage has been done to your teeth and you’re wanting to turn a page, you can also get your teeth professionally whitened. Just make sure you maintain this moving forward by frequently brushing your teeth. It doesn’t take long to put in the extra effort to whiten your teeth and you’ll be thankful for it.