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Alcoholic beverages and the opportunity to drink them are very common during the holiday season.  Before you drink alcohol, learn about its effects on your teeth, gums, and overall health.

 

First, alcohol acts as a diuretic. It tells your body to release too much fluid, which can lead to dehydration.  This can lead to headaches, reduced brain function, and irritability.

 

In addition to drying out the rest of your body, alcohol can also dry out the mouth. It reduces saliva production, and that can increase the rate of tooth decay. To attempt to combat these issues, make sure you drink a lot of water anytime you drink alcohol.

 

In addition to drying you out, alcoholic beverages (and dark soda mixers) can also stain your teeth. Red wine, beer, and dark sodas all contribute to the browning of the enamel. Limit your consumption of these beverages.

Too much alcohol consumption can increase the likelihood of certain cancers of the mouth and throat. To help avoid this, keep alcohol consumption under recommended limits.

 

Tooth damage related to alcoholic beverages is increased if you add citrus to your drink. The added acid wears away at your tooth enamel.

 

The only way to avoid these issues entirely is to abstain from alcoholic beverages.

 

For more information on the effects of alcohol, call Merit Dental in Orem, Utah, at 801-375-9511.  Dr. Dennis DeLoach and our team look forward to helping your smile shine bright this holiday season! Please drink responsibly!