Red, red wine – cutting down

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If you did Dry January this year then red wine will have been off the menu. Similarly, you may have resolved to stop smoking and reduce your caffeine intake by cutting down on tea and coffee too. If you have managed to stick to these resolutions – congratulations! As well as the undoubted benefits to your overall health, an unexpected plus will be the effect on your teeth too.

What stains your teeth in red wine?

The tannins in red wine, coffee and tea stain your teeth by building up on your tooth enamel. Other drinks can be culprits too. White wine is very acidic so softens tooth enamel, making staining more likely. Fizzy soft drinks have such a high concentration of acid and sugar that they also badly damage tooth enamel. This makes your teeth very vulnerable to staining.

It’s not just drinks that can have a detrimental effect on the colour of your tooth enamel either. ‘Healthy’ tomato pasta sauce is also very acidic, thanks to the tomatoes it contains, while spicy curry can turn teeth yellow too.

You don’t have to cut these problematic foods out of your diet. Just make sure you are eating them in moderation.

There are a number of steps you can take to limit the damage too. Obviously, brushing your teeth regularly with a fluoride toothpaste will significantly help. Flossing between your teeth will also help keep plaque, which attracts stains, at bay too. Make sure that at mealtimes you are enjoying crunchy fruits and vegetables like celery. They act like natural toothbrushes and drink plenty of water which will help prevent staining too.

How to remove stains from teeth

Don’t be tempted to try any DIY solutions for removing stains from your teeth and supposedly whitening them. These quack remedies are far more likely to do nothing or do you harm than do you good. Some fluoride toothpastes will help remove stains but the best way to brighten your teeth is to ask your dentist to polish them.

If you want your teeth professionally whitened, your dentist should be your first port of call. Remember, only a registered dentist is legally allowed to perform teeth whitening.

Revive Dental Care welcomes new NHS patients to join us at our practices in Monton, Davyhulme, Bexley Square Salford and Ancoats.

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