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Red vs. White Wine – Teeth Whitening Assassins!

A Bottle of Red or a Bottle of White?

According to Billy Joel, “it all depends on your appetite.” If you are enjoying a juicy steak, a bottle of pinot noir or cabernet might be just the ticket. On the other hand, you should probably reach for a sauvignon blanc if you’ve got a plate of tilapia with butter sauce in front of you. But which wine pairs best with teeth?

We’ve all heard that red wine will cause stained teeth, but Dr. Miller would like to set the record straight, so Shelby residents can make informed choices. New research has shown that red wine protects your teeth and white wine may damage them. If you’re concerned with stains on your teeth, call Discovery Dental today to discuss teeth whitening in Shelby.

Red to the rescue

The next time you pick a white wine over a red to avoid the noticeable discoloration, think twice, because looks can deceive. Emerging studies conducted all over the world have turned conventional wisdom on its head. Research now suggests that the very discoloration that gives red wine a bad reputation may be guarding your teeth and secretly improving your oral health. On the other hand, it turns out that white wine actually weakens teeth, paving the way for stains, acidic damage, and potentially even more problems.

The facts and how to use them

Anybody that drinks a glass of red wine and visits a mirror will notice their teeth are slightly less white than they use to be, but your eyes don’t tell you the whole story. According to scientists at Italy’s Pavia University, red wine prevents certain cavity-causing bacteria from sticking to teeth. If that’s not enough, researchers from Lavel University in Quebec found that red wine might actually reverse the effects of gum disease and keep it from forming in the future.

As for white wine, the story is a little different. New York University College of Dentistry researchers found that white wine attacks and dissolves a thin, protective coating around teeth. The result is a rougher tooth that is more susceptible to stains from coffee, tea, and damage from acidic foods and beverages. In addition, Mainz, Germany’s Johannes Gutenberg University reports that the factor of damage increases with exposure, meaning the longer time spent drinking and more often you drink it, the more your teeth suffer.

So how do you protect yourself? Here are some tips for drinking reds and whites:

  • Red wine does indeed stain teeth, but it has benefits too. If you want to minimize the staining, keep a glass of water nearby and make sure to take a sip and swish it around every few minutes.
  • White wine is a little more sinister, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it when you want to. To minimize the damage:
    • Try to limit the amount of time the wine is in your mouth. Enjoying a glass over a couple of hours will do much more damage than a few quick sips. Rinse with water (just like the red wine) after drinking.
    • Cut down on other staining and/or acidic foods and beverage you consume (e.g. orange juice, red wine, black tea, coffee).
    • Always wait half an hour after drinking white wine to brush your teeth. If you don’t, brushing will actually harm your teeth further.
    • Use whitening toothpaste (after 30 mins) and mouthwashes.

Getting back your pearly whites

If you already have stained teeth caused by red, white, or both kinds of wine and want a brighter smile, make sure to call Discovery Dental for an appointment. All Shelby residents should know about teeth whitening in Shelby and enjoy a brighter, whiter smile. Dr. Miller wants to help everyone pick the option that is perfect for them. Call us today and find out how Dr. Miller can brighten your smile!