Things To Know About Alcohol & Oral Hygiene

December 21, 2022

Things To Know About Alcohol & Oral Hygiene
Things To Know About Alcohol & Oral Hygiene

Many of us like the odd glass of wine of an evening, and in truth, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with drinking in moderation. It can be part of a healthy lifestyle and have very little impact on your health.


However, where it becomes a problem is when alcohol consumption is regular. It can lead to all sorts of problems, from addiction and the need to check into a rehab centre to all manner of health problems, many of which we know about such as liver damage and heart disease. Alcohol can also have some serious problems on your oral hygiene too though, including your teeth.

Oral Cancer

One of the more severe problems that can be developed through alcohol consumption is oral cancer. Alcohol is the second most common risk factor for oral cancer, with heavy drinkers often seeing the diagnosis.


What’s more, it can lead to the likes of gum disease and mouth sores. And with so many people self-conscious about their oral hygiene, it can have a knock on effect in terms of a person’s mental health too.

Tooth Problems

You’ll also find that alcohol can have a major impact on your teeth too. Statistics show that people who do abuse alcohol are three times more likely to lose their teeth, while they will typically have higher plaque levels too.


One of the main problems people face is staining of the teeth. Red wines and dark sodas as a mixer can be particularly harmful to that, while even beer can stain the teeth due to the acidic nature of it, with the dark barley and malts found in beers having staining capabilities due to the chromogens in them.


Dryness of the mouth also occurs due to alcohol, and with less saliva in the mouth, plaque is less likely to be removed from the tooth’s surface, while bacteria will also be able to grow.


Of course, many drinks also come with ice, and chewing on ice can also damage teeth, while the citrus from having a lemon or lime in your drink regularly can also contribute to tooth enamel erosion.


However, it isn’t all doom and gloom though. There are some benefits to red wine in small doses, with the drink proven to kill a bacteria called streptococci which can lead to tooth decay. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can drink lots of red wine - the cons still far outweigh the pros!


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