Seasonal Sipping With Straws

Many of us like to enjoy a glass of wine with friends and family over holiday dinners, or tuck into a mug of spicy mulled wine at an ugly sweater party! Both red and white wines have been shown to have heart-healthy benefits as well as antimicrobial activity, and for connaisseurs, their flavor is delectable.

The problem with wine, of course, from the standpoint of your Littleton CO dentists and staff, is its ability to cast a deep dental stain. Unfortunately, many of us are probably no stranger to the unwelcome experience of checking your teeth in the mirror after a long conversation at a party and seeing that they are a deep purple!

Not only can wine stain your teeth to an unnatural hue, but it also contains quite a bit of sugar. This sugar sticks to your teeth and feeds bacteria there– actually, it’s their favorite food. Bacteria eat the sugar and, in turn, excrete acid, and this acid eats away at our dental enamel– leading to cavities.

In fact, researchers have found that while red wine’s antioxidant qualities are beneficial for our cardiovascular health, wine’s high sugar content seems to outweigh any possible oral health benefits it may carry.

But wait! There’s a solution

Wine lovers who want to sample the finest vintages without besmudging their smiles are starting to sip with straws. By using a straw, proponents claim that they can still taste the wine, but the stain-loving liquid skips over their teeth and tongue, going directly to their palate. This more direct approach keeps teeth stain-free.

In fact, businesses are catching on to the new trend. In California, one of America’s wine hotspots, one such business– Winestraws— sells its wares to vineyards and dentists alike. In fact, some dental offices in the area carry winestraws to hand out to patients as an incentive to rethink how they sip!

These straws are especially made to fit into the proper wine glass– we’re not talking about a slurpee-cup here– so that consumers can enjoy the same benefits of allowing their drink to “breath” while avoiding its staining tendencies. Other straws, like the kind picked up at your local supermarket, may not be quite so specially-formulated for wine drinking, but they will perform the same task of protecting your teeth.

What does McGinty Dental Group think?

We like the occasional glass of wine as much as the next person, but we’ve also been warning patients for years about wine’s potential to stain. No matter what, we encourage our patients to brush their teeth after enjoying a glass of wine, and to take drinks of water in between sips of wine.

Have you tried a wine straw? Tell us what you thought, and how well it worked at your next appointment!

Photo Credit: Michela Simoncini via Compfight cc