The Effects of Alcohol on Your Teeth

Clinking glasses of red wine in hands on rustic wooden planks backgroundMany adults enjoy an alcoholic beverage now and then. What you may not know, is that alcohol can have an adverse effect on your oral health. As with best things, it is best to consume alcohol in moderation or not at all, because this is how it can hurt your teeth:

Sugar Content – All forms of alcohol contain sugar because sugar is what facilitates fermentation. Like the bacteria that ferment alcohol, the bacteria in your mouth also lives on sugar. These sugary alcoholic drinks can lead to tooth decay. If you drink, stick to drinks with lower sugar content. Dry wine tends to have less sugar, so stick with that.

Dry Mouth – Drinking alcohol decreases the flow of saliva in your mouth. Saliva is your mouth’s natural cleaning agent and is responsible for flushing bacteria from your mouth. Instead of washing bacteria away, drinking alcohol causes it to cling to your teeth and damage your enamel. Be sure to drink plenty of water between drinks to replenish the saliva in your mouth, or chew sugar-free gum.

Stains – Dark-colored drinks like red wine can stain your teeth. Choose lighter colored drinks, or follow your drinks with water or sugar-free gum to prevent stains.

Keep your teeth as healthy as possible by scheduling regular visits with your dentist in Skokie and the surrounding areas.