Yvonne S. Hanley D.D.S | Mark K. Murphy D.D.S

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1409 College Way | Fergus Falls, MN 56537

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Open Monday - Thursday. Phone: 218-739-3245

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Lattes and Decay

I have worked in the dental field for over 50 years and yet, continue to see new, interesting and amazing things.

In a period of just the last 4 months I have seen THREE cases of rapidly developing and advancing gum line decay as a result of lattes and/or creamer in coffee. This is sugar in suspension sipped over a long period of time- not unlike the process of baby bottle tooth decay caused from babies sucking on a bottle of milk or formula on and off during the night.

In at least one of these cases it was made worse thanks to the great new insulated mugs. My patient reported that prior to using a Yetti mug, he would drink his coffee over about thirty minutes and be done with it. With his new, great mug, it would stay warm all morning for him to enjoy.

The decay process is active for 20 minutes after ingestion of sugar - the bacteria in the plaque on the tooth turns the sugar into acid and causes dissolution of enamel structure. That means each time we ingest sugar the 20 minute process starts again. Even though enamel is the strongest substance in our body, it does not hold up well to a constant sugar bath.

So the message is: DRINK YOUR COFFEE BLACK!


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