May 27, 2015
You can’t think of life in the Okanagan without thinking of wine. The region is home to more than 130 wineries and vineyards that produce everything from Riesling to Merlot and, by our very sophisticated estimations, our Kelowna dental patients can’t get enough of their wine. So how do you enjoy that glass of vino without staining or damaging your teeth?
One of the biggest issues when it comes to wine and your teeth is the acidity. Tooth enamel is weakened and begins to dissolve when the pH levels drop below 5 - 5.7 and it just so happens that the acids in your wine often lower the pH level in your mouth to between 2.9 - 3.5. This weakened enamel can then act as a welcome mat for red wine tannins and their stains.
If you’re drinking wine, particularly reds, and your teeth are stained, your instinct may be to brush them after a glass or two. Don’t. Because your enamel is in a weakened state (remember that pesky acid?), you will actually be brushing away your enamel. Instead, brush your teeth before your drink to help remove any plaque that your wine may cling to.
Drink a glass of water between glasses of wine. Not only will this help keep the wine from going to your head too quickly, but it will also help to rinse away some of the acids and keep wine stains from forming. Let the water swish and swirl around your mouth to really get in between the teeth.
If you were looking for an excuse to indulge in some cheese with your wine, just remember that your Kelowna dentist told you to. The calcium and fats on the cheese will help to coat the teeth, keeping the acids and any red wine stains from clinging to your tooth enamel.
Whether you are a wine lover or not, it’s always a good idea to strengthen your tooth enamel. One of the best and easiest ways to do this is with toothpastes and mouthwashes that contain fluoride. Use these products at least twice a day and you will give your teeth their best defense against damage and stains caused by that delicious Okanagan wine.