Tea delivers a LOT of health benefits and provides us with a much-needed break from the daily grind. However, it has the potential to turn our pearly whites into shades reminiscent of a dirty pair of white socks. You can drink tea and prevent it from staining your chompers!
How Drinking Tea Causes Teeth Stains
If you are a tea drinker, odds are you may have tooth stains caused by tea. Tea contains constituents known as phenols. These phenols are responsible for the health benefits tea provides. Tannins are water-soluble phenols called theaflavins and thearubigins.
Tannins are responsible for astringency. This astringency causes a dry, tarty, puckering sensation when we drink tea. Tannins are also what give a tea its distinctive color. Tea higher in tannins, such as black tea, is more likely to stain teeth.
The Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research published a study on the tannin content in various teas. The study mentions black tea as having the highest amount of tannins. Green and oolong tea was noted as having lower tannin content.
Our teeth are porous, and discoloration of tooth enamel is a factor that accompanies eating foods and drinking beverages. The most significant culprits as far as drinks go with teeth stains include black tea and coffee.
Are Tea Stains On Teeth Permanent?
Many tea drinkers often ask their dentist, “Does tea stain teeth permanently?” The answer to that is simple. When it comes to drinking tea, unless you take measures after consuming tea, odds are you may notice stains on your teeth that could worsen over time with continued tea intake.
Does Green Tea Stain Your Teeth?
Green tea is lower in tannins; however, it still has the capability of potentially staining our teeth. Many tea drinkers opt for green tea as a better alternative with regard to tannin content and tooth staining.
Does Herbal Tea Stain Teeth?
Colored tisanes (herbal tea) have the ability to possibly stain our teeth. Don’t let the lighter colored tisanes fool you into thinking they don’t stain because they may contain tannins.
So, does ginger tea stain teeth? This might come as a surprise, but ginger tea does have a high capability of staining teeth, especially when infused with lemon. The European Journal of Dentistry confirms this fact.
Does Decaf Tea Stain Teeth?
Whether tea is caffeinated or decaffeinated, it still contains tannins. It’s the tannins that are responsible for staining our teeth.
The information presented on this site is provided for information purposes only. It is not meant to substitute for medical advice or diagnosis provided by your physician or other medical professionals. Do not use this information to diagnose, treat, or cure any illness or health condition. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, contact your physician or healthcare provider
How Do You Keep Tea From Staining Your Teeth?
So, are you ready to look at a few options to keep your teeth bright and free from stains? Remember that regardless of any tips we may provide, good dental hygiene is a must that should follow the intake of any consumable.
Tip: Drink Tea That Won’t Stain Your Teeth
How do you know which tea doesn’t stain teeth? The average tea drinker typically doesn’t know what the tannin content is in tea. White tea is the purest of all true teas (black, green, oolong, white.) It also has the lowest tannin content, hence less chance of teeth staining!
The lighter the color of the tea, the lower the tannins!
Tip: Use A Straw To Drink Tea
Rather than sipping tea, drink it through a straw. Most of the consumed tea bypasses your front teeth and heads on down the pipeline! But remember, too much straw sipping can cause unwanted wrinkles around the mouth.
Tip: Brush Teeth Immediately After Drinking Tea
About a half-hour, after you have finished your tea, use whitening toothpaste and brush your teeth. Easy peasy! Oh, and if you don’t have whitening toothpaste, you can use a few sprigs of fresh mint. Simply rub the mint between two fingers, remove the leaf particles, and rub the mint oil on your teeth for a quick whitening refresh!
Tip: Add A Splash Of Milk To Your Tea
A research article entitled “Prevention of Tea-Induced Extrinsic Tooth Stain” notes that adding a splash of milk to your tea helps reduce tooth stains from tea. Casein (a component in cow’s milk) actively works to prevent tea-caused tooth stains.
Tip: Cut Back On Drinking Too Much Tea
If you’re like some of us who consume tea from sunup to sundown, it might be time to reduce your tea intake. The more tea we drink, the higher the odds are of having stained teeth.
Tip: Eat Something With Your Tea
Enjoy a nice scone, shortbread, or other confection with your tea. Food consumed while drinking tea adds an element of abrasiveness to hopefully cut down potential tooth stains. Don’t forget to brush afterward.
Tip: Use Water To Rinse And Drink
Add a cup of water to your teatime to rinse and swallow after drinking tea.
Drink, Brush, Rinse – It’s That Simple
You can enjoy your tea without fearing your teeth will turn to unwanted shades. Don’t deprive yourself of the joy of drinking tea because of possible tooth stains. Just follow up with brushing and rinsing. It’s that easy.
After all, “It’s Never Not Teatime!”