For many of us, a steaming cup of coffee is the only thing that makes mornings manageable. But sadly, every sip of coffee dims your smile.
Like other dark-colored drinks (red wine, colas) coffee stains your teeth. Eventually, you’ll end up at the dentist or drug store in search of a tooth whitening treatment. It’s a vicious cycle though, as your newly brightened teeth are (for a time) more susceptible to staining.
But two coffee addicts in London may have come up with a solution: clear coffee. Yes, clear – you can look right through the drink, it’s completely transparent.
According to The Evening Standard, the founders of CLR CFF – two brothers – came up with their new product because they realized their daily caffeine habit was wreaking havoc on their smiles.
“We are heavy coffee drinkers,” CLR CFF co-founder David Nagy told the Standard. “Like many other people, we struggled with the teeth stains caused by it. There was nothing on the market that would suit our needs so we decided to create our own recipe.”
The Nagys said that CLR CFF is free of preservatives, artificial flavors, stabilizers, and sugar, is made with “high-quality Arabica coffee beans and pure water” and only contains four calories per serving.
“It is produced by methods which have never been used before. Due to this combination of technology and high quality ingredients a drink has been developed which is unique in taste and flavor … If you are looking for a refreshing coffee but you want to keep your smile white, then Clear Coffee is perfect for you!”
Clear Coffee is not readily available in the U.S., though it can be purchased online for $7.50 (2 pack, plus about $15.00 shipping), or just under $20 for a 5 pack (shipping brings the total up to about $38). We haven’t been able to taste it yet, but reports from London media indicate that the coffee tastes like … coffee. Note that it is cold, so you’ll be sipping it as a chilled beverage. The Nagys point out that it can also be used to create coffee cocktails.
But Does It Save My Smile?
Clear coffee is likely to be a far better choice than dark-colored liquids containing caffeine. With no coloration, it can’t stain your teeth.
Be aware though that coffee is an acidic drink. Even though enamel is the hardest substance in the human body, it can still be weakened by acids present in the mouth. When dental enamel is weakened, or eroded, bacteria can penetrate the tooth’s softer inner pulp and cause severe damage. Left untreated, a small cavity—even a tiny hole in the enamel—can result in a painful infection, and can eventually lead to tooth loss and other problems.
One major goal of oral hygiene is to control these harmful bacteria by removing them from tooth surfaces. This should be done via regular brushing and flossing, as well as professional cleanings at the dental office. The fluoride in toothpaste can also help to re-mineralize enamel, which adds to its cavity resistance—and can even reverse very early decay. That’s why it’s so important to practice these preventive measures.
The body does have a natural defense against acid attack: healthy saliva, which can neutralize the acids if given sufficient time to work. However, if the mouth is constantly bathed in acid (by drinking coffee frequently, for example), saliva won’t be able to counteract the threat.
You might think that brushing your teeth after drinking soda is a good idea—but since acid softens tooth enamel, brushing too soon afterward can cause more enamel to be removed. After consuming acidic substances, wait an hour before brushing so your tooth enamel won’t be as soft. You can, and should, rinse with plain water after consuming acidic foods or drinks; this can help wash away some of the acidity.
And no matter whether your coffee is as clear as your conscience or as dark as sin, you can help to keep your smile bright by practicing good oral hygiene daily, and visiting your dentist regularly. If budget doesn’t allow for dental checkups and care, consider getting a dental savings plan. With discounts of 10%-60% on dental procedures, you can afford the quality dental care that you need to keep your teeth healthy.