Coffee, a beverage that helps prevent cavities

Coffee, like many of the foods that we consume habitually has suffered throughout the recent history pendulum movements in the perception of its properties; oscillating, according to the times, between harmful and beneficial according to the changing results of scientific publications.

Coffee is a beverage full of flavor, good to keep us alert and makes the day more enjoyable. The coffee, was born in the year 1140 in Abyssinia, when some shepherds realized that their goats were getting very restless and were given the task of investigating the reason for this euphoria.

They discovered that they were eating red fruits that were given in some bushes. The shepherds took the fruits, toasted them and prepared a hot drink to protect themselves from the desert night chill. Since that day coffee has become one of the most used and most precious drinks for the most select palates.

Lately many beneficial properties have been discovered such as reducing headache, avoiding blood clots, reducing the risk of suffering from Parkinson’s disease, improving asthma and allergies, preventing stone formation, decreasing the risk of developing cancer, reducing depression, reducing the risk of developing diabetes and one of the most important for oral health the prevention of caries. Always a moderate consumption between three and four cups a day.

Caries is one of the chronic diseases with more prevalence among all sectors of the population although in the young population including children it is observed more. The caries is an endogenous infection that causes destruction of the hard tissues of the tooth by the bacterial activity that are able to produce through the glycosyltransferase, insoluble adhesive polysaccharides the formation of a plaque that mediates the accumulation of the streptococci allowing the adhesion of these last on the surface of the tooth. All this process can be inhibited through the consumption of specific products such as, the apple that inhibits the formation of plaque, the wine that inhibits the formation of the biofilm of streptococcus mutants, it tea (green tea) that has antimicrobial activity on the mutants streptococci.

In a recent study where caries indices were observed in 1000 patients of both sexes who consumed only coffee as a beverage, it was found that the rate of caries in patients who drank coffee without additives (sugar or milk) was 2.9 in the subjects who consumed coffee with sugars and milk, the caries index was 5.5 and the subjects who consumed were drinking milk but without adding sugars, the caries index was 3.4. The conclusions of this study were that coffee helps in the prevention of caries but only if it is consumed without additives.

This property of coffee is allowed by the presence of polyphenols in it. The presence of the latter in coffee ranges from 5.5% to 12%. Polyphenols have many properties such as, for example, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic activity and the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. Coffee has no effect on the inhibition of mutant’s streptococcus growth but it significantly reduces them on the surface of the tooth.

In a very recent study indicate that the components of coffee (melanoidin) have an anti-biofilm and anti-adhesion activity that does not allow streptococcus mutants to adhere to the hydroxyapatite of the tooth. The creation of the biofilm was completely inhibited in the presence of the fractions with a high molecular weight and only 20% in the presence of the melanoidin components.

With all this we can say that consuming coffee without additives of any kind and in a moderate way can help in the prevention of dental caries but we must always bear in mind that it is a drink that can color the teeth if consumed in an exaggerated way.

Coffee, ally or enemy of dental health

That coffee stains teeth is one of the most widespread beliefs around this exciting and aromatic beverage. And it is true that we ink our teeth, because as tea and other drinks contain dyes that stain tooth enamel, especially in large doses.

To prevent the coffee from darkening our teeth we can take it with milk, since less concentrated stains less or we can also drink a glass of water after ingesting it, which is similar to a buckle arm. With certain precautions and with a correct oral hygiene, our aesthetics will not be affected. However, in this article we will talk about the many benefits of coffee, and not only for our general health, but especially for our oral health.

The main benefit of coffee, always taken in moderation, is that it is an activator for the caffeine it contains. It is known to give energy, it keeps you alert, it is diuretic, laxative and even many elite athletes take it to keep the adrenaline high in the competition (beware, it is a substance considered dopant). But its other benefits are much less known, coffee is vasodilator and thus prevents diseases such as diabetes or some types of cancer, it also favors blood pressure and thereby prevents coronary heart disease and is even shown to reduce the possibility of contracting neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s.

Coffee and dental caries

So far we have seen some of the advantages of coffee consumption in our body for its anti-oxidant components, but what is less known is that coffee also has anti-bacterial components, which among other things, reduces the risk of develop tooth decay. In our article of dental caries we saw that the main cause of the appearance of caries is the bacterium Streptococcus mutants.

Recent studies have confirmed that trigonelina (responsible for the bitter taste of coffee), acts as a powerful anti-adhesive against this bacterium that causes dental caries. This substance, together with chromogenic acid and nicotinic are the anti-bacterial components that reduce the chances of developing caries.

We know that over time and taken in large doses the coffee stains teeth, but taken moderately (up to three cups a day) and carrying out a proper brushing (two or three times daily), not only do we get our teeth are not stained, but also thanks to its anti-oxidant, anti-carcinogenic and anti-bacterial action, achieve excellent benefits for our oral health and our general health.

Cold hypersensitivity syndrome 

Approximately 1:1,000,000 of the general population is affected.  The responsible gene (CAS1) has been mapped to 1q44 and encodes for cryopyrin, a protein that is expressed on peripheral leukocytes and chondrocytes and appears to be involved in apoptosis and caspase-1 activation.

The diagnosis is based on the clinical findings and the family history and is confirmed by sequencing analysis of the CAS1 gene (although CAS1 mutations also occur in other syndromes, e.g., Mackle-Wells Syndrome). Usually the onset of symptoms occurs hours after birth or as soon as the baby is exposed to a cold environment.

Delayed presentation is possible, but the maximal age at onset is believed to be less than 6 months. Urticarial eruptions are triggered by exposure to cold, damp air, and/or wind (air conditioning), generally occur 1 to 2 hours after exposure, and initially present as macules and papules on exposed skin areas, which then spread to covered sites.

The distinctive lesions have a purple cyanotic color and are surrounded by a white halo, causing a burning pain rather than itch. Intense cold exposure not only is associated with eruptions lasting for up to 48 hours, but potentially also with a systemic reaction of fever, sweating, arthralgia, myalgia, headache, conjunctivitis, and leukocytosis, which usually follow 4 to 6 hours after exposure.

Systemic amyloidosis has been suspected in some cases, but the diagnosis in these cases was questioned and reevaluation found the diagnosis of Mackle-Wells syndrome more likely. Nevertheless, a small percentage of patients with cold hypersensitivity syndrome suffers from renal amyloidosis. Although the disorder is a lifelong issue, it does not affect life expectancy. Treatment is primarily preventive. Medications used to treat the disease are no steroidal antiinflammatory drugs, steroids, and gold. Some patients have also been treated with interleukin-1 antagonists and stanozolol.

Avoid cold exposure. Arterial hypotension and cardiovascular collapse may occur. Increasing the temperature in the operating room and warming the operating room table before patients are brought into the room are recommended. The use of warming mattresses or better forced-air convective warming devices and warmed infusions should be considered.

Hypothermic cardiopulmonary bypass and cold cardioplegia should be avoided although they have been used successfully in one patient with prebypass and on-bypass antiinflammatory treatment. Because some patients are on gold therapy, a complete blood count (to rule out thrombocytopenia, leukopenia, agranulocytosis, or aplastic anemia) should be obtained, and renal function (because of possible renal amyloidosis; creatinine, blood urea nitrogen) and hepatic function (transaminases, bilirubin, coagulation profile, serum albumin) should be assessed.

Patients may be on steroid therapy and, depending on the procedure, perioperative steroid stress coverage may be required.

Culture of dental prevention

It is well known that, people go to the doctor only when there is pain, they have some discomfort or they felt something strange. We do not have the culture to go to a routine review, for that reason it is indispensable to develop this culture of prevention.

The oral hygiene should be included in the culture of prevention, because the mouth is central to our health and a body part that can detect many diseases.

The dentist not only checks the teeth, also gums, lips, inner part of the cheeks, braces, etc., so it may be the right one to detect some diseases such as anemia, leukemia and cancer in the mouth, among others.

All this can be achieved when a good medical-dental history is made, which will be a reference in the culture of prevention and care.

A patient must be aware that such prevention begins with care from pregnancy. Therefore, it is important to indicate to a mother the hygiene measures, and guide her for an intake of foods rich in nutrients that allow good mental, physical and dental health.

The first measures of dental hygiene in a newborn can start with oral cleaning. With gauze rolled on the mother’s index finger and wet with boiled water, the inside of the mouth is cleaned after each feed.

The mother should be recommended to breastfeed, as part of a culture of prevention, both for the defenses that will transmit to the baby, and for the stimulus that this causes in the development of their jaws when doing so.

When the first tooth appears in the baby, the professional will tell the mother to use a soft brush, so that the child will associate food with cleaning, in order to develop the habit of oral hygiene.

Always the way of brushing should be supervised by the parents since this way the child acquires the skill for a better handling of the brush.

The child can be given fluoride application around a year or year and a half of life; thus, the prevention culture will be repeated every year, in the same way that the eruption and development of the dental pieces will be monitored.

That is why parents should take their children to the dentist, which is essential in the culture of prevention, to take their children and that if necessary they are made a complete and appropriate treatment according to their age and development.

This is how with minimally invasive dentistry, more pleasant care can be offered.

Dangers of not whiten teeth with professionals

Many people seek to have a perfect smile and therefore undergo the treatments they think necessary to achieve it. One of the most used is that of teeth whitening.

Whitening is increasingly offered by more non-specialized centers such as aesthetic or hair removal clinics with non-dental personnel, with the dangers that this entails for patients.

These treatments are not safe and that carried out by non-specialists can have consequences for patients such as “burns, mucosal alterations or tooth sensitivity.

In this way, the teeth are not rid of the fever of the aesthetic clinics that have been in our society for years. These centers offer lower prices and promise practically unattainable results. They are the perfect bait for those who want it good, beautiful and cheap.

All whitening treatment must be prescribed by a dental health professional.

The most commonly used method for teeth whitening treatments is hydrogen peroxide and carbide peroxide. But these products have their dangers and should only be used by dental professionals.

Caution with miracle products

The miracle products, so well-known for example for thinning attempts, also exist in this case of tooth whitening. Certain pastes and products to “have white teeth” can be dangerous. These products are high abrasive content pastes whose function is to eliminate stains.

In short, as is the cause whitening treatments, aesthetic surgical interventions, etc. everything must have a way of being done that does not endanger the patient’s health.

The search for savings of a few dollars in beauty and aesthetic treatments can have short or long-term repercussions, in some cases irreversible that make it not worth the risk.

Dental cracks

The dental cracks is considered as a structural loss of the tooth that is not due to any bacteria, but is due to a very frequent trauma on the teeth and caused by an excess of the force of the bite on them. There is, therefore, a loss of hard dental tissues.

Dental cracks has a series of consequences:

  • The thickness of the enamel is lost in the area of ​​the neck of the tooth. The fragile and brittle enamel prisms break due to the deformation produced by the force of the bite.
  • The enamel is subjected to constant flexion by occlusal movements. In the neck of the tooth the flexural deformation takes place, in normal periodontal conditions, since the tooth and the alveolar bone have a similar modulus of elasticity. Like the crown, with its rigid enamel layer, it cannot be deformed. The deformation can only take place in the neck of the tooth. This causes the hard substance to break, facilitating greater permeability and making the chemical restructuring of the tooth easier.
  • The exposed dentine is predisposed to abrasion by brushing and the action of cariogenic agents.

Treatment of dental cracks.

The early dental treatment of the cracks is performed by occlusal adjustment, to reduce flexion and compression. The treatment of dental cracks depends on their characteristics. In general, a restoration with resin is sufficient in most cases, however in cases of sensitivity, restoration can be recommended with another type of protective material, such as the glass monomer, or the combination of these two materials. These restorations tend to be quick, as there is no infected material as in the case of tooth decay, it is not necessary to wear the affected surface. In addition, discharge splints must be used to neutralize the mechanical stress factors that contribute to progress of these injuries.

Definition of teeth

The teeth are one of the most important parts of our body. They are found inside our mouths and we use them especially to chew, crush, the food we eat. This crushing will obviously facilitate its transfer through the digestive tract. They also turn out to be indispensable when it comes to oral expression. We have only to observe a person without teeth speaking to realize how difficult it will be to understand their diction without teeth.

For these important functions that deploy is that we must take care of them in a preventive way to avoid being affected by some of the typical conditions, such as tooth decay, plaque, gingivitis or inflammation of the gums, among others.

The teeth of human beings are characterized by their white color and by their hardness, that is, they are rather solid bodies that are made up of calcium and phosphorus. They are implanted in the jaw bones of the jaw, in the mouth.

Meanwhile, there are four types of teeth that people have and each of these has a particular function: the canines tear, the incisors cut the food, and the molars are responsible for grinding and the premolars to crush food.

Its appearance occurs at an early age, a few months of life of any person, while, those teeth, popularly known as baby teeth, are temporary, at the age of five or six years fall spontaneously and the definitive denture emerges.

The moment of replacing the milk teething is usually a very special moment for the person given that at a certain point marks its maturity.

Brush them regularly after meals and make regular visits to the dentist, who is the professional who takes care of the health of the teeth.

Dental abscess

What is a dental abscess?

A dental abscess (or phlegm on in more colloquial language) is an accumulation of pus caused by a bacterial infection originating inside the tooth (tooth pulp). It usually occurs as a result of an untreated caries or a tear or crack in the tooth that allows bacteria to access it.

The treatment consists of draining the abscess and eliminating the infection of the affected area. The tooth can be saved with an endodontic treatment but in some cases it may be necessary to remove the affected tooth. If the dental abscess is not treated properly, serious health complications can occur.

You can prevent dental abscess with good oral hygiene habits, a good diet and going regularly to check-ups with the dentist.

Symptoms of a dental abscess

The most frequent symptoms of a dental abscess are:

  • Severe, persistent and throbbing pain
  • Sensitivity to heat
  • Pressure sensitivity when chewing or biting
  • Fever
  • Inflammation of the face or cheek
  • Swollen or tender lymph nodes under the jaw or in the neck
  • Sudden discharge of malodorous liquid with bad taste and disappearance of pain if the abscess breaks.

When to go to the dentist

Visit your dentist as soon as possible if you have any signs or symptoms of a tooth abscess. If you have a fever and swelling of the face and cannot contact your dentist, go to the Emergency Department. Fever and inflammation may indicate that the infection has spread to the maxilla and adjacent tissues and even to other areas of your body.

Causes of a dental abscess Dental abscess

The dental abscess occurs when the bacteria invade the dental pulp, which is the innermost and softest part of the tooth formed by connective tissue and which contains blood vessels and nerve endings.

Bacteria enter through a cavity or fissure in the tooth and extend to the root. This infection causes inflammation and the space so narrow in which this inflammation occurs force the pus to leave forming a bag (or abscess) at the tip of the root.


The dental abscess will not be cured without treatment. If the abscess breaks, the pain may decrease significantly but dental treatment is still necessary. If it does not drain, the infection can spread to the maxilla and other areas of the face and neck. In extreme cases it can cause septicemia (widespread infection throughout the body with risk of death).

If you have a weakened immune system and leave the abscess untreated you have much more risk of the infection spreading.

Tests and diagnosis

In addition to examining the affected tooth and the area around it, your dentist can perform one or more of the following tests:

  • Gently tap the affected tooth. A tooth with an abscess in the root is very sensitive to touch and pressure.
  • X-rays to identify the abscess and extent of infection
  • Lab tests. In those cases in which the first antibiotics are not working, knowing which bacteria is the cause of the infection allows a much more specific treatment.

Treatment and medication

The main objective of the treatment is to drain the abscess and eliminate the infection. For this, the dentist will usually opt for one of these procedures:

  • Perform an endodontic. This treatment helps eliminate the infection and save the tooth. For this the dentist drills the tooth, eliminates the infected pulp and drains the abscess. The pulp chamber and root canal of the tooth are filled with a special material and sealed. Then the dentist protects the tooth with a crown. An endodonced tooth can last a lifetime if properly cared for.
  • Extract the affected tooth. If the tooth cannot be saved, the dentist will remove it and drain the abscess to eliminate all infection.
  • Prescription of antibiotics. It may not be necessary if the infection is limited to the abscess area. In cases where the infection is more widespread (nearby teeth, jaw, face, neck, etc.) your dentist will prescribe antibiotics to stop the infection. If you have a depressed immune system for some reason, you may also recommend antibiotics.

Home care

  • While the abscess area heals, you can do the following to relieve the discomfort:
  • Rinse your mouth with warm salt water
  • Take some painkiller

How to prevent abscess

Avoiding tooth decay is essential to prevent a phlegm on from coming out. Therefore all the tips to prevent cavities are applicable here:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste
  • Use dental floss or interproximal brushes daily
  • Use dental floss or interproximal brush provided that food is packaged between the teeth
  • Avoid the most harmful foods for the teeth
  • Visit the dentist regularly for professional cleaning and revisions
  • Use the mouthwash that your dentist has recommended for you

Dental abscess symptoms and treatment

An abscess is an injury infected by bacteria that is characterized by the accumulation of pus inside the affected tissue. When our teeth or gums are suffering some damage and we do not pay the attention that we must to solve it opportunely, a consequence can be the infection and accumulation of pus of the tissues related to the tooth, forming what we know as a dental abscess. This can cause the suffering of symptoms such as stinging pain and pressure, as well as fever, swollen neck ganglia, bad taste in the mouth, among others. To avoid severe complications, it is very important to visit the dentist as soon as possible to cure the infection completely and restore the affected tooth as much as possible.

Causes of dental abscess

The dental abscess may have different origins and depending on the tissue that it affects, it will be given a name or another to describe it. In most cases, the affected tooth has an advanced caries that produces extensive destruction of the tissues and compromises the pulp of the tooth, that is, the component that gives life to the tooth. If an early solution is not given to this and the lesion continues to advance, the pulp tissue dies and produces the spread of bacteria through the extreme end of the root (apex) and a cluster of said bacteria, producing what we know as a periodical abscess.

In other situations, the infection has its origin at the level of the gum as a result of a deposit of bacterial plaque on the surface of the teeth, which produces the formation of large gaps between the gum and the tooth, known as periodontal pockets. When these bags are filled with bacteria they can become infected, producing a gingival or periodontal abscess, depending on their depth. Other cases in which the formation of abscesses in the gum can occur is the presence of foreign bodies or the packing of food in the space between the gum and the tooth.

A very common case of dental abscesses is related to the eruption process of the third molars (wisdom teeth). During this process, a space is usually formed between the gum and the tooth similar to that of a periodontal pocket, inside which the bacteria grow very easily, causing tissue inflammation and infection. This process is known as pericoronaritis, which is one of the most common causes of pain related to third molars.

Symptoms of dental abscess

Among the main symptoms of dental abscess is pain, which is caused by the irritation caused by the infectious process on the tissues affected and the inflammation that accompanies the infection. This pain usually appears mainly during chewing, although it can also be spontaneous and in cases of periodontal abscesses there is often pain when it comes to contact with cold or hot foods.

You can get a bad taste due to the discharge of pus from the tissues to the mouth, especially in cases of pericoronitis and periodontal abscesses, and this outflow of pus may be accompanied by blood.

Due to inflammation, the gum enlarges and turns red. When a periodontal abscess has advanced enough, it can produce destruction of the bone that supports the tooth, so it begins to have mobility.

In the periodical abscess, when the infection has long been present, it begins to produce a destruction of the bone until it reaches the gum, forming a red bulge through which the pus escapes. This path from the infection to the gum is called a “fistula” and its appearance is related to a momentary relief of pain.

Complications of the dental abscess

When the abscess is not controlled, the affected person may develop fever and inflammation of the lymph nodes.

In the most severe cases, the infection can spread to other regions through muscle fibers or cause inflammation of a wide area of ​​the face, producing a cervicofacial cellulitis. A very rare situation is the spread of infection through the blood and causing infection of other tissues (sepsis).

Treatment of dental abscess

It is important to mention that no abscess of dental origin is cured only by the use of antibiotics (even when they help to control it), since it is always necessary to drain the accumulation of pus and eliminate the agent that caused the appearance of the infection. First place. This is done in different ways depending on the type of abscess the person has:

  • Periodical abscesses: the tooth must undergo a procedure called endodontic treatment, also known as root canal treatment. This procedure is carried out by a dentist specialist in endodontic and consists in eliminating the dead tissue and infection along the root and bone with the help of substances and antiseptic medicines. Once the ducts and bone have been disinfected, the endodontic seals the entrance to the duct to prevent reinfection.
  • Periodontal abscesses: you should see a periodontics. The treatment consists of draining the infection and then a procedure called scaling and root planning, which consists of the removal of plaque and calculation of the roots of the affected tooth, and create a suitable surface for the recovery of the gum.
  • Treatment for pericoronaritis: it is carried out by an oral surgeon. In general, this condition is a criterion to opt for the extraction of the wisdom teeth, since although the inflamed tissue can be removed by a procedure called operculectomy, the only definitive treatment for pericoronitis is the extraction of the wisdom teeth.

However, when a tooth affected by an abscess has too extensive destruction of its structure or the surrounding bone and the chances of recovery are few or none, it is necessary to extract it to drain the infection.

We invite you to go to a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

Dental brushing techniques

Dental brushing is the first step to maintaining a healthy smile. But if we want to eliminate the maximum amount of bacterial remains, it is fundamental to have a good technique.

Brushing is one of the first oral hygiene techniques that are learned in childhood. Some recommendations to maintain a good tooth brushing are that it lasts between two and three minutes, using a good toothpaste … It is not the same to brush sensitive teeth as with the gums inflamed by periodontal disease. Also keep in mind that the brush, both electric and manual, tends to wear over time. Therefore, many professionals recommend replacing it once every three months. How do I know if my brush no longer cleans the same? A very clear signal is that the filaments are very open.

The best dental brushing techniques

  • Bass technique

It is the most recommended technique. What does it consist of? Very simple: in making smooth and inclined movements of the gum towards the edge of the tooth. This technique allows the gingival sulcus to be cleaned more deeply. But it is important not to exert too much pressure, to avoid bleeding and retraction of the gums. In fact, there are many patients who believe that by exerting more pressure cleaning is more effective. Nothing is further from reality, since abrasion and tooth sensitivity are favored.

To perform this technique correctly, it is advisable to place the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle. Using the Bass technique can prevent inflammation and bleeding of the gums. In addition, it is advisable to brush each tooth applying this technique for about ten or fifteen seconds. This system is especially advisable in patients with some periodontal disease.

  • Vertical technique

It consists of brushing the teeth of the upper arch in contact with those of the lower arch making vertical movements. This technique is also highly recommended by many experts.

  • Circular technique

This technique is especially recommended for the little ones. It consists of brushing making circular movements. In this way we get to cover from the upper gum line to the lower completely. In addition to eliminating the remains of bacteria, children massage their gums.

But maintaining a healthy and radiant smile is not achieved only with brushing. In fact, the brush alone cannot reach the most difficult parts of the oral cavity, such as the spaces between the teeth. It is therefore important to incorporate other interproximal hygiene techniques, such as dental floss and mouthwash. It is also very important to see a trusted dentist regularly. The most recommended is once every six months, to keep the smile healthy and radiant.