It’s long been thought that coffee is far from great for your dental health. It’s been attributed to staining teeth and causing bad breath, and while both may be caused by excessive coffee consumption, new research has found that coffee could be good for your teeth.
“We found that coffee consumption did not have an adverse effect on periodontal health, and, instead, may have protective effects against periodontal disease,” said Nathan Ng of the Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine and lead author of the study.
The study collected data from 1,152 men to participated in the Veteran Affairs’ Dental Longitudinal Study from 1968 to 1998. These participants self-reported on how much coffee they consumed, and the researchers examined them for oral care, hygiene, gum disease risk factors, and even symptoms of diabetes.
What they found was those who were regular coffee drinkers had a decreased risk of developing gum disease. They theorize that the antioxidants naturally present in coffee form a sort of protection barrier over the teeth and gums.
“The results of the study certainly sound encouraging for long-time coffee drinkers who are worried about how their caffeine consumption can affect their dental health,” said Tan Garrett, spokesperson for ErskineDental.net. “When it comes to their teeth, coffee drinking should be the least of their concerns now.”
Of course, the research team wants to expand their study, using a more diverse sample of the population than just veterans. However, this is a great start, and it could be encouraging for those who don’t want to give up their daily cup o’ joe in the name of dental health. But that shouldn’t still sway all ye coffee drinkers from getting your teeth cleaned on a regular basis. That’s still very necessary for your dental health.