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Risky Professions Part 1: The Wine Maker

Risky Professions Part 1: The Wine Maker

How regular wine drinking or tasting affects your teeth

Since moving to the Central Otago area I’ve noticed a higher percentage of patients with acid erosion on their front teeth. Needing to get to the bottom of that cause of this I often find these people are working in the wine industry and tasting on a daily basis.

Why does wine cause acid erosion?

A wine's acidity is the leading suspect in damage to enamel. Composed mainly of a basic salt called hydroxyapatite, enamel begins to dissolve when acidity lowers the pH in your mouth below a critical point, somewhere between 5 and 5.7. Meanwhile, wine’s malic, tartaric, lactic, succinic and citric acids usually contribute to a pH of between 2.9 and 3.5.

So how can you prevent damage?

If you are determined to keep wine in your mouth long enough to truly taste it? Try finishing your tasting with a swig of water or milk, which have neutral pH. Hard cheese is also a great way to neutralise the acid (Wine and cheese anyone?). Wine tasters should not brush their teeth immediately after tasting. Post-tasting, wait one hour before brushing so as not to aid the erosion process of the already-softened enamel. Consider using fluoride varnish, remineralising chewing gums and creme’s  and invest in a toothpaste that is low-abrasive and contains remineralizing agents. Finally, don’t go to bed with wine-coated teeth.

For a more detailed plan to help you keep those chompers erosion free contact the friendly team at Wanaka Dental

Posted: Mon 10 Jul 2017

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