Think about your teeth this party season
Be aware of potential health risks
We all like to let our hair down once in a while. Socialise with friends, have a dance and a drink but I bet you’ve never thought about the possible effects of alcohol on your teeth and gums! With Christmas fast approaching many will have party’s and functions to attend and the alcohol will be flowing. Is there really a need to worry about the possible consequences of alcohol consumption to our teeth?
Whilst there is nothing wrong with enjoying the odd glass of wine now and again, excessive alcohol consumption can have a huge impact on the health of your teeth and gums. Different drinks can cause different dental problems so its important we are aware of these and understand the potential problems.
Know your alcohol
Wine – whether its red or white it doesn’t matter. Wine is very acidic and when drank over a period of time the acidity softens the enamel. This makes it more susceptible to staining. Red wine contains dark pigments called chromogens. The darker the wine the more likely your teeth will become stained.
Spirits and mixers – mixers are very high in sugar and some are acidic like wine. Sugar reacts with the bacteria in your mouth producing acids, this causes acid attacks to your teeth. The enamel becomes soft and gradually a hole appears called a cavity.
Spirits – just because you are drinking them straight with no mixer, doesn’t mean its any less damaging. Spirits with a high alcohol percentage such as vodka and whiskey, decreases saliva production making your mouth dry. Your mouth relies on saliva production to help wash away food particles and minimise any acid attack to the enamel.
Beer – if you are going to drink alcohol this is probably the best for your teeth due to its high water content and low acidity. Having said that it is still acidic and does still pose harm to your teeth.
To minimise damage to your teeth sip water whilst drinking alcohol and on the odd occasion rinse the water around your mouth. Chewing sugar free chewing gum will also help
For those who drink alcohol excessively then there is always the risk of mouth cancer. We are not saying avoid alcohol altogether, just everything in moderation. You can still have fun and take care of yourself at the same time.