Posted .

Many holiday traditions involve consuming alcoholic beverages. Before you drink, be aware of the effects of alcohol on your teeth, gums, and overall health.

Alcohol acts as a diuretic. This means that it cues your body to release too much fluid, and you can get dehydrated. Dehydration can lead to headaches, reduced brain function, and irritability.

Additionally, alcohol dries out the mouth. It reduces saliva production, which can lead to higher rates of tooth decay. To try to reduce these issues, make sure you drink a lot of water when drinking alcohol.

Alcoholic beverages can also stain your teeth. Red wine, beer, and dark sodas all contribute to the browning of the tooth enamel. Definitely, limit how many of these you drink and be sure to accompany them with water to rinse them away from teeth.

Excessive alcohol consumption can increase the chances of getting certain cancers of the mouth and throat. To try to avoid this, keep alcohol consumption under recommended limits.

Tooth damage related to alcoholic beverages is increased if you add citrus to your drink and if you chew the ice in your drink. Chewing ice can break teeth, and the added acid from the citrus wears away at your tooth enamel.

For more information on the effects of alcohol, call DeMercy Dental in Roswell, Georgia, at 770.641.8010. Dr. Jeff DeMercy and Amanda Kossick and our team look forward to helping your smile shine bright this holiday season! Please drink responsibly!