For many, the day doesn’t truly start until the comforting aroma of fresh coffee fills the air—or their stomachs. While coffee provides a welcome kick-start to the morning, it can be problematic for teeth, especially due to its staining potential. After a couple of years, you may need teeth whitening treatments to make up for the discoloration.
Don’t worry, there are ways to mitigate these effects and keep your pearly whites nice and bright. Continue reading to learn how!
How Does Coffee Stain Teeth?
Before you dive head-first into prevention, you should learn how coffee stains teeth in the first place. Coffee is a complex brew that scientists have been studying for a long time. It has acid which can erode tooth enamel, leaving them more prone to stains.
In addition, coffee contains pigmented compounds known as chromogens, which will gladly stick to tooth enamel. Over time, these chromogens gradually make their homes under the enamel, leaving behind long-lasting stains.
How Can You Prevent Coffee Stains?
Now that you understand how coffee’s acid and pigment work together to yellow your teeth, you can develop counter strategies. Here are a few good ways to get started:
- Rinse with Water – After enjoying your cup of coffee, rinse your mouth with water. This helps wash away residual coffee particles and reduces the chance of staining.
- Brush Promptly – If possible, brush your teeth 30 minutes after drinking coffee. Brushing helps remove surface stains before they have a chance to set in. Even better, brush 30 minutes before you drink coffee to tighten your enamel’s pores.
- Use a Straw – Opting for a straw when consuming coffee can minimize direct contact between the beverage and your teeth, reducing the risk of stains.
- Chew Sugar-Free Gum – Chewing sugar-free gum stimulates saliva production, which aids in neutralizing acids and cleansing the mouth.
What if My Teeth are Already Coffee-Stained?
If you were unsuccessful at preventing stained teeth, there is still hope. Teeth whitening treatments are available over the counter or at your dentist.
If you can only pick one, go with the professional clean your dentist can offer. The results are far better and longer lasting since they use more concentrated chemicals. Hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide are the main ingredients in these treatments. Once applied, they bubble under the surface of your teeth to remove tough stains.
If you love coffee, there’s no need to give it up. Use these tips to minimize staining and maintain a consistent oral hygiene routine of brushing and flossing each day. This is the best way you can continue to savor your favorite brew while preserving the brightness of your smile.
About the Practice
At Costello & DeHart Dental Excellence, Dr. Ernie Costello and Dr. Jay DeHart work tirelessly to give their patients excellent dental care. With their combined expertise in a variety of fields, including cosmetic dentistry, they offer customized treatment plans to restore both smiles and confidence. To schedule a teeth whitening consultation, call (847) 259-1111 or visit the website to explore other services they offer.