Many of us can’t start the day without a cup of coffee or tea, however have you ever thought how all that caffeine might affect your mouth? Most people are aware that drinking large amounts of tea and coffee can stain your teeth, however are not aware that caffeine can affect not only aesthetics, but also your overall oral health.
Caffeine is a naturally occurring substance that is found in foods such as coffee, tea and chocolate but can also be an additive in things like energy drinks, soft drinks and some medications. Caffeine is a natural diuretic which means after ingesting it you will need to urinate more frequently and can become dehydrated. Dehydration is a serious problem for maintaining good oral health as it causes saliva to be of low quality. Saliva is a natural protection for your teeth and mouth, as it lubricates the teeth, aids in digestion and helps to wash away food particles.
If you’re a caffeine drinker, especially coffee, you will know that it can sometimes be bitter or acidic. This is a concern for the maintenance of a healthy mouth as tooth enamel can be eroded away by this acidity which can lead to things like dental decay, cavities and sensitivity. The same can be said for sugary drinks with caffeine in them such as soft drinks, which along with the sugar that is present in them have the ability to damage your teeth.