Tea is a time-honored tradition and popular beverage all over the planet. However, the type of tea you drink and how you take it can make a big difference for the health and condition of your teeth. If you regularly drink tea, here are three things to take into consideration that could be harming your teeth.
One of the biggest cosmetic problems for people who drink tea is the influence of tannins. Tannins are present in all kinds of tea, especially black tea. Whether you brew it yourself, drink it hot or cold, or drink it mixed with other beverages, chances are you're consuming tannins.
The good news is, tannins don't typically affect the health of your teeth. However, they may leave them discolored. Tannins can effectively dye your tooth enamel, making your teeth look dirty or brown.
Vitamin C is often added to tea in order to help to keep it fresh. It's commonly added when you drink a tea beverage mix that contains juices or other fruity flavors to give it that sour taste that's common with citrus, too. However, even plain tea often contains vitamin C.
The reason vitamin C is a problem for your teeth is that the ascorbic acid can wear down the enamel that protects your teeth. If you drink tea regularly and it contains vitamin C, you could end up with badly weakened enamel over time that could leave your teeth more susceptible to cavities.
Finally, whether you drink your tea with sugar or not can make a big difference in your oral health. Most people know that sugar is bad for their teeth, but in combination with the above issues, it can make things even worse.
Vitamin C temporarily softens the enamel of your teeth, leaving it more susceptible to damage. This means that when bacteria feed on sugar, they can more easily chew through the enamel of your teeth while it's softened from sipping tea with vitamin C. If this happens often enough, you're far more likely to develop cavities than if you drank tea without sugar or tea containing sugar with no vitamin C.
Ideally, you should try to eliminate sugar from your tea entirely. Artificial sweeteners can give you the sweet zip without any danger to your teeth. At the very least, try to avoid the combination of sugar and vitamin C in your tea.
These ingredients can potentially change the way that your teeth feel and look. If you're concerned about protecting your teeth, try sticking to brewing your own tea at home without any additives. In the meantime, visit a dental clinic like Ramtown Dental Associates to find out if your teeth need help after drinking tea regularly.