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Does Alcohol Hurt My Teeth?

Posted on 5/1/2024 by The Implant Center at Comprehensive Dental
glass of red wine sloshingThere has been a lot of research done about the problems associated with heavy use of alcohol. You may be aware that tobacco use can have adverse effects on your teeth, but did you know that heavy alcohol use can also be harmful to your teeth? Here are some ways drinking a lot of alcohol can be harmful to your dental health.

The Sugar Content Can Lead to Cavities and Gum Disease

Most alcoholic beverages contain sugar and carbohydrates. Sugar and carbohydrates allow the bacteria in your mouth to grow and multiply constantly because sugar is their food source. The more sugar in alcohol you consume daily, the more difficult it is to keep your teeth healthy. In addition, if you drink sugary mixed drinks, sodas with alcohol, or milkshakes, you are just adding to your sugar content.

Your Teeth Can Become Discolored

If you drink wine regularly, the tannins can discolor your teeth. You may be able to remove the stains by using tooth-whitening toothpaste, whitening strips, or having your teeth whitened at our dentist.

Some Types of Alcohol Contain Acids

Alcoholic beverages like beer and wine contain acids. Over time, these acids work to dissolve the top covering of your tooth, which is called the enamel. Your tooth enamel coats and protects your teeth from bacteria. If you lose tooth enamel, your teeth could become sensitive to hot and cold food and beverages.

Heavy Alcohol Users

For people who have a heavy dependence on alcohol, their teeth and gum health are at risk. First, people who drink heavily have more plaque and tartar than people who do not drink heavily. Plaque and tartar are linked to periodontal disease as well as tooth decay. Also, people who are alcohol dependent may not make it into our dental office regularly, which increases their chances of dental diseases. People with an alcohol dependency are at risk of other diseases as well, such as oral cancer.

Not sure whether your teeth are in good shape? We can help. Reach out to our dental office today to request an appointment.

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