Alcohol & Oral Health

Many people are taking part in Dryathlon this month and we’d like to start by congratulating all of you, we hope it’s going well. If you’ve not heard about Dryathlon, it’s a campaign run by Cancer Research in which participants are sponsored to avoid all alcohol for the month of January. This shouldn’t seem like much of a challenge, but let’s face it, most of us enjoy a tipple, so hats off to those taking part!

There are many advantages to your general health when not drinking alcohol, your liver and heart are put under less stress, your sleep improves along with your mood and general wellbeing. It is also hugely beneficial to your mouth and teeth and I wanted to explore how.

One of the most dangerous risks of alcohol on your oral health is the increased risk of mouth cancer. Cancer can occur in any part of the mouth, tongue, lips, throat, salivary glands, pharynx, larynx, sinus, and other sites located in the head and neck area.

In the UK 38,000 people are living with a diagnosis of head and neck cancer.

Around 60,000 people in the UK will be diagnosed with mouth cancer over the next decade.

Alcohol is a common cause of mouth cancer as drinking to excess can quadruple the risk of tumours developing. Alongside this risk, alcohol is extremely destructive to teeth. I examined the acidity & sugar levels which can cause damage to teeth, the following shows the content of what may be one of your favourite tipples!
The normal PH level for saliva is 6
Real Ale PH4
Cider PH3
Wine PH3
Gin & Tonic PH2.5
Malibu & Coke PH2
The sugar in grams is as follows:
Real Ale 5g
Cider 20.5g
Wine 1.5g
Gin & Tonic 14g
Malibu & Coke 39g
So if you do fancy a tipple this January, Wine or Real Ale will do least damage, but as with everything enjoy in moderation, maintain a good oral health regime at home and you should not encounter any problems.
If you’d like to find out more about the best ways to maintain good oral hygiene, call Hartley on 01752 661361