What completes your day after a stressful shift in the office? Some prefer cakes. Others want chocolates. What about you?
If you are all into enjoying wine – We cannot blame you! More than the taste and flavor, red or white wine takes every simple meal to a different level. But, wine also has the effect of staining your teeth, which can be a troubling matter.
How Wine Can Stain Your Teeth and Why
Red wine provides a staining effect on your dental health, and it can be embarrassing during a special event or corporate gathering. Luckily, There’s a quality and effective solution to get rid of the discoloration and stain right away. But have you ever wondered how and why red wine stains your teeth after a single shot?
According to a family dentist Dr. Ruchi Sahota, the teeth are like apples. They have a thick dentin core and a thin enamel shell. Then, red wine usually affects the outer shell of the tooth or the enamel.
Yes, the hardest of all bodily tissues is the enamel. But the level of acidity in red wine makes it susceptible to erosion. Once the dental surface starts to lose, the inside of your teeth is exposed, which is more susceptible than the hard enamel. Therefore, the more your teeth wear and tear, the higher the risk of getting cavities.
Teeth staining or discoloration is the most immediate concern for those who drink red wine. Similar to tea and coffee, red wine is rich with chromogens. These are pigment-producing substances that bind to your teeth, which can cause a strong staining effect over time.
It is not just the red wine that gives you a stained smile or tinted grin. White wine can also be a culprit. Although it doesn’t contain pigments, white wine has a higher level of acidity that can break down your teeth enamel and make them weaker against the other pigmented drink/food.
List of Tips on How to Avoid Teeth Staining
Brush Your Teeth Before and After Drinking Red Wine
Don’t be stressed and disappointed when your teeth get stained after drinking one or more glasses of red wine. But don’t leave your teeth unclean for hours. Brush them to maintain the natural shine and strong enamel.
When is the right time to brush your teeth? After looking at your purple toothed grin in the mirror, you may be tempted to get your toothbrush. Never do that! Brushing your teeth after drinking red wine can damage the enamel. Why? Wine has a high acidity level that can make your teeth sensitive and vulnerable to abrasion.
Wait for 30 minutes or an hour before you get rid of the stain.
It is advisable to brush your teeth before a drinking session to prevent tannins from sticking to plaque. This also reduces the risks of stains while enabling you to smile with confidence.
Any whitening kinds of toothpaste can brighten your teeth and remove the stains. You can also consider whitening strips or dental treatments. But consult your dentists before anything else.
Use Paper Towels or Wine Wipes to Wipe Your Teeth
It would be awkward to brush your teeth during a corporate or special event after drinking red wine. Of course, you cannot bring your toothbrush to a big gathering. So, how to get rid of stains?
All you have to do is to use paper towels. If there are no paper towels, wine wipes are a better alternative. Depending on the brand of your choice, wine wipes are easy to use and effective in restoring the natural color of your teeth. You just have to be gentle when removing the stain to avoid further and costly damages.
Drink Through a Straw
Red wine itself is flavorful with some sweetness, strong taste, and crispness. But you have to drink it the right way to satisfy your cravings. Of course, drinking wine straight from the glass may enhance the flavor, aroma, and taste.
However, the stain might be a headache to remove. Why don’t you drink through a straw? That means the wine has less contact with your teeth.
For that reason, it causes fewer teeth deterioration or sensitivity, prevents cavities, and reduces the risk of discoloration. So, don’t be shy to ask for a straw.
Eat Foods High in Fiber to Help Scrub Off Stains
Yes, you read it right. Fiber-rich foods can help scrub off stains from red wine. What food should you try? Apples, for example, contain malic acid that’s responsible for the fruit’s tart flavor. While the apples’ crunchy texture removes food particles, the malic acid stimulates the normal saliva production.
Pineapple is also a great alternative that will serve as a natural and risk-free teeth whitener. Did you know that most teeth whitening products are developed with bromelain, an enzyme found in pineapple? Aside from the stain-fighting effect, the component also provides other health benefits.
Similar to apples, broccoli is rich in fiber that can clean your teeth. It is also high in iron that protects the enamel from decay. Cauliflower, celery, and other cruciferous vegetables are worth your effort and time as well.
Cheese – A Protective Layer of Calcium and Another Tasty Wine and Food Pairing
Cheese and other dairy delights encourage saliva production that neutralizes the level of acids in your mouth and washes away food particles. It also prevents staining and protects tooth enamel from eroding due to the presence of calcium and other important nutrients. Apart from a teeth whitening effect, cheese is another tasty pairing with red wine.
Don’t Start with White Wine; It Erodes Teeth Because of Its High Acidity
Which is more acidic between red wine and white wine? It’s white wine. While the high level of acidity gives the wine its crispness/liveliness/balance, it erodes your teeth over time. It causes enamel-corroding effects and cavities.
During a special occasion, be sure to eat fiber-rich foods such as celery, broccoli, or pineapple to stimulate saliva production and scrub off tiny food particles.
If you have been drinking white wine for the past months, don’t forget to consult your dentist. A regular checkup should not be overlooked for your dental health.
Petroleum Lip Gloss or Chapstick Can Help Protect your Teeth
Petroleum lip gloss is another effective solution to avoid the staining effect of red wine and other beverages. How does it work? Once applied, it serves as a barrier to the tannins, which cause teeth discoloration.
When is the best time to use petroleum-based lipglosses? Of course, dentists and other experts encourage everyone to apply it before a wine-drinking session. Also, it’s worth it to use petroleum lip gloss after every glass.
Chapstick can also protect your teeth from tough stains. Like the petroleum lip gloss, chapstick serves as a barrier between lips and teeth. It effectively catches tannins, too.
But can you use lipstick as an alternative to lip gloss or chapstick? No, they don’t have the same effect. Apply enough lipgloss so that you can still have a genuine, captivating, and confident smile.
Drink Water or Seltzer to Rinse
Why do you think there’s sparkling water or seltzer on the table during an occasion? Yes, one of its main purposes is to keep red wine stains at bay and balance your alcohol intake. The best time to sip on some H20 is in between glasses. Don’t forget to swish the bubbles to loosen the presence of tannins, scrub off tough stains, restore a bright smile, and bring back your contagious confidence.
But is seltzer safe? You’ve probably heard the notion that drinking seltzer or sparkling water erodes tooth enamel. Good news! There’s nothing to worry about. While seltzer contains carbonic acid, it’s weak and doesn’t pose a risk to your dental health.
Rubbing Lime on Your Teeth Can Be a Quick Fix
Do you have to give a toast to the groom or bride in front of a bunch of people? It’s quite frustrating and embarrassing to face the crowd with stained teeth because of red wine. Ask the bartender for a lime right away. Rub it against your lips and teeth gently. But use this trick sparingly because limes and other citrus fruits have high acidity levels. It’s always ideal to use a straw or apply a petroleum-based lip gloss.
So, don’t be afraid of stains from red wine. There are many tips and tricks you can perform every time you attend an occasion. But remember that keeping good dental health and a balanced diet is the best way to enjoy white and stain-free teeth.