Nobody wants discolored teeth. When maintaining those pearly whites, here are five of the biggest tooth staining drinks and how to still enjoy them.
As someone who once went to the dentist and was told I had 13 cavities (in one visit!), I try my best not ingest things that will stain or damage my teeth. However, I need a little variety in my beverages and get tired of water all the time. The drinks below may stain your teeth but you can still drink them occasionally with some tweaks.
5 Drinks that Stain Your Teeth
1. Red wine
Red wine is one of the healthiest alcoholic drinks out there. It contains relatively low sugar levels and carries various heart benefits. Unfortunately, of all alcoholic beverages, it’s the most likely to stain your teeth. The dyes, tannins, and acids that cause red wine to have its distinctive color can get trapped in the pores of your enamel. This causes staining for long-term red wine drinkers.
To prevent red wine staining, always brush carefully after consuming this drink. You could also start having your red wine with cheese. Cheese can help to clean your teeth as you eat it. This stops red wine stains from sinking in. It’s also full of calcium, which is great for our teeth. It helps to counteract the damaging effects of sugar found in wine.
If you’re coffeeholic, it could also be bad news for your teeth. This hot drink can cause coffee breath and dries out your mouth so that bacteria are more able to thrive. Coffee is also one of the biggest causes of stained enamel. This is mainly due to the drink’s dark pigment. As a general rule dark colored beverages are the ones to be wary of as these colorants will end up on your enamel.
Black coffee drinkers are more likely to suffer from staining. The milk in the lattes and mixed coffee drinks can help to counteract this a little. You can also try sipping glasses of water between cups of coffee, helping to keep your mouth cleansed.
Alternatively, if you’re merely looking for a caffeine hit, you could try switching to another drink such as water with caffeine. Sipping iced coffee through a straw could also prevent stained teeth. Sipping through a straw prevents the coffee from swilling around your mouth and from coming into contact with your teeth.
3. Adding Citrus to Your Water
Oranges, lemons, and limes all contain citric acid that is bad for our teeth. This could make your teeth yellow. Although technically this isn’t staining – citric acid wears away at the enamel revealing the yellow dentin beneath. Such discoloring cannot be brushed away – your only option may be to get veneers or have your teeth bleached!
When it comes to citric fruit juices such as orange juice, grapefruit juice or lemon juice, try to drink these in one sitting rather than sipping on them throughout the day. Then wash them down with some water to help clean the citric acid off your teeth. You can also try drinking these juices through a straw. These drinks may be bad for your teeth, but they’re packed with vitamins that can help the rest of your body, so don’t feel that you have to give them up!
The best way to get the benefit of the of citrus plus the yummy taste but not the enamel-eroding effects is to put a drop of citrus essential oil in your water. The health benefits are amazing, and the amazing taste encourages you to drink loads more water!
4. Soft drinks
It should be no surprise that soft drinks are bad for your teeth. They contain more sugar than any other beverage. The recommended daily sugar limit is 36 grams, and there are 39 grams of sugar in a single can of soda alone! This sugar erodes at the enamel, causing yellowing. On top of this, darker colored soft drinks contain colorants that will contribute to staining.
Your best option for protecting your teeth is to lower your soft drink intake. The sugar in soft drinks won’t just be damaging your teeth but could also be affecting your blood sugar levels causing damage to your whole body. Opt for zero-sugar versions of these drinks when you can. Also, drink them through a straw so that your teeth aren’t getting coated in the liquid.
5. Fruit Juices
Beware of fruit juices that are not 100% juice. In these cases, you are merely sipping on sugar. Just like with soft drinks, all the extra sugar does damage to the enamel on your teeth, staining them yellow. Limiting yourself to 100% pure fruit juice is ideal for your teeth.