If you're a coffee lover, you may find yourself concerned about what this tasty beverage does to your teeth. Many Canadians enjoy at least 1 cup of coffee per day, with many of those drinkers consuming as many as 3.2 cups per day.
Your enamel is at the front lines when it comes to being stained by the coffee you love. While it's the densest substance in your body, it's not as smooth as you would expect. Enamel is porous. Littered with little pock marks, your enamel is the perfect canvas for stains to adhere to.
Where Coffee Comes Into Play
Coffee is an acidic substance that is normally served piping hot. These two factors make coffee naturally lend itself to staining teeth. Coffee does its dirty work through repeated exposure. Every time it coats your teeth and is allowed to sit, it soaks into your enamel a little more. In this way, coffee acts almost like a dye, and if you sit anything in a dye long enough its color will start to change.
Sadly, all of this is the perfect storm to tint your teeth.
How To Prevent Staining
Giving up your coffee habit is the best way to prevent the staining from occurring. However, that's probably not going to happen.
Instead, try to time when you sit down for a cup of coffee. This does two things. First, rather than sipping throughout the day and repeatedly coating your teeth, it limits your enamel's exposure to the coffee. Secondly, each time you decide to indulge it gives you the opportunity to act quickly and either rinse out your mouth, or brush your teeth. This prevents the stains from setting in.
You could also consider using a straw to drink your coffee, this gives the coffee a one way ticket to the back of your mouth, leaving many of your teeth unscathed.
How Your Dentist Can Help
Coffee stains on your teeth are typically surface stains, resting just on the outside on your enamel. This makes them some of the easiest stains to remove.
Your dentist can help with coffee induced staining in a few ways. First, making sure you go to regularly scheduled cleanings. This will take care of most surface stains.
If you still don't feel your teeth are white enough, consider a whitening treatment. These treatments are typically quick and safe, and your dentist can provide the best results in their office. If you are looking for a dental clinic in Calgary, then check out one like Forest Lawn Dental Centre.