Almost all people love coffee. It has a nice flavor and it provides an energy boost that’s hard to achieve with any other substance. According to the NCDT, 63% of all Americans drink coffee every day, this accounts for more than 200 million people in this country alone.
Also, in the US, around 4 million people wear braces which leaves according to statistics, 2 million people on the dilemma of drinking coffee or not to preserve the looks of their teeth.
It is important to note that coffee shouldn't be left aside as it provides many health benefits almost no one knows.
For example, in a very large study done in the UK that involved 500,000 participants, it was found out that those people who drink coffee have fewer chances of dying of any cause than those who don't.
Another study done in Spain with 20,000 people confirmed that statement and went as far as revealing that people over 45 were 30% less likely to die from any cause if they drank two additional cups of coffee every day.
While the exact mechanisms behind it are not for sure, it is thought that this is because of the more than 10,000 chemicals found in it that protect the cells from damaging the human body. I guess it's not time to dump that latte in the morning, right? Give me two if you may.
Additionally, studies have found it that people who drink coffee are less prone to heart disease, stroke, slow aging, prevent suicide to some extent, and burn fat.
Other reasons pointed by people that compel them to drink coffee are that it helps them go through the day and its smell calms them.
Thus, it is no coincidence that coffee is the most popular drink of them all in the US, over Coca Cola and even bottled water. In fact, Americans drink more coffee than juice, tea, and soda combined. In numbers, this accounts for each American drinking 88 gallons of coffee on average a year.
I too wondered, will I ever get to eat coffee while undergoing my orthodontics treatment? My dentist gave me a green light and said I could as long as I followed the next guidelines.
Here is exactly what I did.
Prepare it with milk
This is because milk contains proteins that bind with some of the chemicals found in coffee to reduce the chances of ruining a beautiful white smile. These proteins bind to substances called polyphenols doing this, These substances then go to the stomach, place in which they are broken down.
This only applies to animal milk. I was able to prevent my teeth from staining, and who wants to have stained teeth even more so with braces on top of them? Also, it is believed that the high-fat content found in milk is helpful for this purpose. There are millions of people that are intolerant to lactose in the US and soy won't work as well as milk for this purpose so soy milk and even almond milk will serve to no avail. However, there is no need to worry as there are other measures that can be taken to protect your teeth.
Brushed my teeth more times each day
After an hour that I took my coffee, I would brush my teeth. This is because the acid found in coffee as well as in pretty much any other drink or food makes the enamel softer and sensitive. This acid takes up to one hour to fade away and I didn't want to feel any pain at all but didn't want to carry the risk of letting my teeth get stained if I didn't brush them after taking coffee.
Since I normally drink coffee both in the mornings and in the afternoons. This means I had to brush my teeth two or more times every day than I previously did. The quality of a toothbrush should is also important. One with stiffer bristles should be chosen over one with soft ones.
Drink more water
By drinking more water, I was able to get rid of the small coffee particles that were left in my teeth after drinking a cup of two of them in a row. Unlike brushing, I didn't wait an hour to drink water since I wanted to have my teeth clean as fast as possible and drinking water didn't pose any damage to them. Some people also drink milk for this purpose and that is perfectly fine.
Using a straw
To even take more measures against the teeth staining malady, I used a straw most of the time. Sometimes when I was at work I didn't have access to one. However, when I bought it at the coffee shop, I would always use one. This should be done not only when drinking coffee but also when drinking anything that has high PH levels or has sugar in it. Since I care a lot for the environment, I always bought eco-friendly straws I could easily dispose of and recycle after using them.
Go Decaf or drink coffee with less caffeine
Even though decaf coffee may not have the same health benefits as normal coffee, I was so much into coffee and caring for my teeth that I turned to them. It is the substances in caffeine which give it its dark color and thus increases the chances of staining the teeth responsible for this unwanted condition.
Use a better brewing method
Whenever possible use a percolator over the French press to brew your coffee. Cold brewing is another good option. Even if it takes longer to brew, it has fewer chances of giving me stained teeth due to repeated consumption.
For me as well as for everybody else, my looks are important. For this reason, I just didn't use any of these measures as a stand-alone basis. I tried to incorporate all of them as much as I could. Consulting a dentist is always a good choice as they have experience with these types of things.