Happy National Coffee Day!
Let’s celebrate National Coffee Day with some great news about coffee! Recent research has shown that caffeinated coffee offers many benefits for oral health, including less plaque and bacteria in the mouth as well as the potential to stave off serious health risks like oral cancer.
COFFEE MAY HELP PREVENT BACTERIA
A study by the Federal University in Rio de Janeiro found that the robusta coffee bean grown in Vietnam and Brazil helped to eliminate bacteria on the teeth as well as prevent the formation of plaque. Using bacteria from saliva, researchers cultivated plaque on donated fragments of primary teeth. Once the teeth were exposed to an extract of the robusta bean, the bacteria cells appeared to have burst, thereby lowering the risk of excessive plaque accumulation. Less plaque translates to a lower risk for tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health concerns. Unfortunately, regular coffee consumption can still stain the teeth.
Coffee May Protect Against Oral Cancer
A study conducted by the American Cancer Society in 2012 found that polyphenols in coffee may also help protect against the development or progression of oral cancer. This study associated the consumption of more than four cups of caffeinated coffee per day with a 49 percent lower risk of oral/pharyngeal cancer death. Since coffee is one of the most consumed beverages worldwide, it may give us all one more good reason to enjoy our daily cup of joe.
The Bad News
Coffee sweetened with milk or sugar can potentially counter the benefits which can erode the enamel and increase bacterial production.
The Good News
Try swapping milk for heavy whipping cream and by swapping sugar for a sugar-free sweetener like Stevia. Any staining that occurs over time can be easily corrected at our office with a whitening kit. But first, enjoy the good excuse for another cup of Joe!