The Not So Lucky Side Effects of Green Beer

green beerEvery March 17th, we’re all a little bit Irish and join in the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day by putting on our best green outfit and possibly meeting up with friends at a local bar. As one of the largest drinking days of the year, our dental office in Doylestown wants to remind our patients and neighbors to enjoy the holiday responsibly and to make them aware of a few unwanted side effects of all that beer (especially the green kind).

Yellow, Brown, or Green Teeth

Drinking beer excessively can began to discolor your teeth over time. A good rule of thumb to remember is the darker the beer, the more likely it is to stain your teeth. This discoloration can take on a yellow or brown appearance, or when drinking beer that’s been dyed for St. Patrick’s Day, your smile may even take on a green tint relatively quickly. This green look isn’t permanent and can be treated with either a whitening toothpaste, which is a bit more abrasive than regular toothpaste and can scrub away surface stains, or with a professional dental cleaning or smile whitening treatment.  

Enamel Erosion

Your tooth enamel is one of the strongest substances in your body, but that doesn’t make it impervious to damage. One of the most common causes of enamel erosion is too much acid in your diet, and beer is surprisingly acidic. When this acid comes in contact with your teeth it essentially eats away the protective enamel coating. As enamel diminishes, your teeth may become more sensitive and appear thinner and darker.

How to Minimize the Danger

We’re not here to tell you that you can’t or shouldn’t enjoy an adult beverage every now and then, as long as you’re of legal drinking age and are drinking responsibly. But if you choose to drink alcohol, there are ways that you can minimize your risk of the dangers described above, such as:

  • Alternating drinking a glass of alcohol with a glass of water
  • Brushing your teeth twice a day
  • Flossing every day
  • Seeing your dentist in Doylestown regularly

We typically recommend regular dental visits twice a year. If it’s been longer than six months since you’ve been to a Doylestown dentist, we welcome you to schedule an appointment with us today to help keep your smile in good health.

What is Charcoal Toothpaste and Does it Work?

charcoal toothpasteChances are you’ve seen all the social media posts raving about using charcoal toothpaste to whiten your teeth. Its popularity has soared over the past few years, and many people are raving fans of it. But what is this gooey black stuff that everyone seems to be using? Does it actually work? Our dental office in Doylestown wants to help get your questions answered.

Question 1: What is Charcoal Toothpaste?

When you first think of charcoal, we’re willing to bet you envision a gray rock that’s typically used for grilling food at the annual family picnic. Charcoal toothpaste isn’t made of that, but rather from activated charcoal. Activated charcoal is a form of carbon that’s been processed to have tons of tiny pores. In relation to oral health, it’s believed that these pores can absorb stains, tartar, and bacteria that may be lingering on teeth.

Question 2: Is Activated Charcoal Safe to Put in Your Mouth?

Activated charcoal has been used for over 2,000 for a variety of healthcare reasons including dental uses. In fact, the ancient Romans’ toothpaste consisted mainly of charcoal powder. As time progressed, activated charcoal was used to help victims of poisoning. Some hospitals may still utilize this technique today.  

Question 3: Does Charcoal Toothpaste Whiten Teeth?

It turns out that the claims about charcoal toothpaste are in fact true. Charcoal toothpaste can be effective at giving teeth a whiter appearance by removing surface stains. However, if the staining is deeper, activated charcoal toothpaste probably isn’t your answer.

Question 4: Should You Use Charcoal Toothpaste?

Essentially it’s your decision to use or not to use charcoal toothpaste. But the American Dental Association (ADA) warns against is repeated use. The abrasive texture of charcoal toothpaste can wear away tooth enamel and leave your teeth exposed to bacteria. Diminished enamel may also cause teeth to appear more yellow or darker, which probably isn’t the look you’re going for.

Alternative Ways to Whiten Your Smile

Despite the charcoal toothpaste craze, there are safer and more effective ways to get whiter teeth such as:

If you’re looking for the best way to whiten your teeth, give our Doylestown dental office a call to schedule an appointment. We’d be happy to have you!

“How Can I Improve My Smile?”

woman ashamed by smileAre you unhappy with the way your smile looks? You’re not alone. According to the American Association of Orthodontics, more than one third of U.S. residents don’t like their smiles. But our dental office in Doylestown has some good news: you don’t need to live with a smile you don’t like! Thanks to advancements in dental technology, there are easy ways to improve your smile with cosmetic dentistry.

Smile Whitening

One of the most common complaints people have about their smiles is that it’s just not white enough. Smile whitening is an easy, affordable solution that can help whiten your smile by several shades. There are both in-office and take-home whitening options available, and even over-the-counter products. Before you choose a whitening product, we encourage you to look for one with the ADA Seal of Acceptance and talk with your dentist in Doylestown about the best solution for you.


Dental veneers are another popular cosmetic dentistry treatment that can transform the appearance of your smile. These thin pieces of ceramic are custom-shaped to match your specific needs and appear natural. Your dentist will bond the veneers to the front of your teeth, essentially covering up anything you don’t like including discoloration or chips and cracks.


If your tooth trouble is more focused on dark, decayed, or chipped teeth, dental bonding may just be the solution you need. Dental bonding is a super simple, yet often incredibly effective, treatment that will quickly create a smile you’re proud of. First, your dentist will remove any decay. Next, the area of concern will be covered with a safe composite material. Your dentist will then use an artistic eye to sculpt the material into a natural shape and even color. The composite material is then hardened, or bonded, to the tooth surface for a strong new look.

Complete Smile Makeover

If you’re someone who can’t seem to narrow down your concerns to just one or two, you may be an ideal candidate for a smile makeover. During a smile makeover process, you and your dentist will work closely together to identify all of your concerns and determine a treatment plan to fix them. A complete smile makeover usually includes several types of cosmetic dentistry treatments, but is a life-changing procedure that will certainly give you a beautiful smile you’re proud of.

If you’re unhappy with any aspect of your smile, we encourage you to give our Doylestown dental office a call to schedule a consultation. You deserve a smile you love, and we’re happy to help.

Drinking Wine: Good for the Heart, Bad for Teeth?

holiday dinner with wineMost of us have heard that drinking red wine may have heart-healthy benefits. And while there’s still some debate on just how true that is, you may find it surprising that there may just be some oral health benefits to partaking in glass every now and then. Our dental office in Doylestown explores these potential smile benefits as well as some not-so-good side effects in this week’s blog.

The Good

Studies conducted in several areas throughout the world have suggested a positive link between drinking red wine and a decrease in tooth decay. One of these studies published by the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry took bacteria rich biofilm from the mouths of several volunteers, which they then dipped into wine. What they found was that the wine was effective at getting rid of the bacteria. With less bacteria around to weaken enamel and cause decay, one could also assume a lower risk for cavities. However, it might not be all good news.

The Bad

In most of the studies surrounding the positive correlation between red wine and dental health the researchers removed the alcohol content prior to testing. This is important to note since we know alcohol tends to dry out the mouth. A dry mouth has the opposite effect of fighting off decay and actually supports a decay-friendly environment. Red wine also has a tendency to transform teeth from a bright white to a dull or discolored appearance. While that can usually be reversed through whitening or cosmetic dentistry from your dentist in Doylestown, it’s still a negative in our book. Finally, the acidity of wine can wear down tooth enamel and leave teeth exposed to, you guessed it, decay.

The Final Verdict

We don’t really have a definite conclusion on whether the potential positives of red wine outweigh the negatives. Essentially, more research is needed for us to get on board with supporting the claim that red wine is a good way to fight decay. But in the meantime, we’re not here to tell anyone to stop enjoying their occasional glass of wine, of course. Just enjoy responsibly, keep an eye out for any tooth discoloration, and follow the tips below.

  • Alternate drinking wine with water. If you can, it wouldn’t hurt to rinse your mouth out with water occasionally, too.
  • Hold off on brushing immediately after drinking wine to keep the acid from being spread throughout your entire mouth and all over your teeth.

If you’re a red wine lover and happen to notice some tooth discoloration, call our Doylestown dental office to schedule a professional whitening or cosmetic dentistry treatment to get your smile back to a vibrant white. Or if you’re just looking for a new place to call your dental home, we’re always welcoming new patients and would love to see you. Schedule a visit with us today!