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Irish Independent - Health & Living - - MIND YOURSELF -

COCK­TAIL HOUR

There is more to al­co­hol’s ef­fect on our teeth than sim­ply red wine stains: heavy drink­ing causes higher lev­els of plaque on the teeth which can lead to pe­ri­odon­tal gum disease and tooth loss. It can also cause dry mouth as it de­creases the amount of saliva pro­duced that washes away plaque and bac­te­ria from the teeth and acts as a buf­fer against acid. Aside from al­co­hol, other in­gre­di­ents in your gin and tonic can be harm­ful: cit­ric acid in the slice of lemon or lime can erode tooth enamel leaving it sus­cep­ti­ble to de­cay, as can chew­ing ice cubes. To avoid stain­ing your teeth, sip darker drinks through a straw and rinse with wa­ter be­tween each al­co­holic bev­er­age.

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