Green tea is a beverage made with leaves that have not undergone the oxidizing process that makes darker-colored versions of this drink, like black tea. The result is a lighter-tasting and appearing beverage that provides wellness benefits to the drinker. Research suggests that green tea enhances mental alertness, digestion, and blood pressure.
But green tea can also offer advantages to your oral health thanks to its antioxidants. However, it can pose a risk to your teeth if you are not careful with your consumption of this beverage. Read on to learn more about how green tea can improve your smile as well as how it might hinder it.
Protect Gum Health with Antioxidants
Antioxidants are compounds that can fight harmful substances that may damage cells. So consuming foods and drinks that contain antioxidants can reduce your risk of certain diseases, including oral infections such as gum disease.
More specifically, antioxidants will work to lower the more dangerous effects of the body’s inflammatory response. They can reduce swelling and irritation stemming from inflammation from heart disease and other health concerns. And they can also help to keep your gums healthy.
Gum disease is an infection of the gum tissue that presents with inflamed gums in its early stages. As it spreads, bacteria will eat away at the tooth root and jawbone, heightening the chances of major dental damage like tooth loss.
About half of American adults will suffer from gum disease, and it will not go away on its own. You will need periodontal therapy from your dentist to get rid of this infection. So many dentists promote preventative care when it comes to gum health.
Antioxidants in green tea can help keep gum disease at bay and relieve uncomfortable symptoms from this infection. Consult your dentist about any issues with your gums and continue visiting the dentist’s office to maximize preventative care for your smile.
Beware of Potential Tooth Damage from Green Tea
Though its oral health advantages are clear, you still need to pay attention to your smile to avoid tooth damage that green tea may cause. For instance, green tea has a lighter color than black tea but still contains tannins. Over time, tannins absorb into the enamel, leaving stains behind on the surface of your teeth.
You cannot remove this dental discoloration with your oral hygiene routine alone. So look out to make sure you are not harming your smile’s appearance with this beverage. Ask your dentist about teeth whitening treatment if you do see stains on your smile.
The antioxidants in green tea can lower your risk of tooth decay as well. But check the sugar content of this drink before you consume it. Added sugar can negate this positive effect of green tea because sugar can erode your teeth.
This puts your smile at risk of cavities. Though a dentist can treat a cavity with relative ease, you should preserve your natural dental structure as much as possible.