the right smile

Educating Patients on their Oral Health Options

Alpharetta Dentist: Green Tea and Your Oral Health

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Green teaDrinking green tea is in style, but guess what, it may also be good for your teeth.  A recent study found that those who regularly drank green tea had better oral health than those who didn’t.[1]  Examining three indicators of gum disease, researchers found that for every cup of green tea consumed per day, a decrease in all three indicators occurred.[2]

In the study, the researchers examined 940 men ages 49 through 59 on the three indicators of gum disease by measuring the pocket depth between the gums and tooth, loss of the bone attachment of the tooth and probing bleeding gums[3]. They found that the men who had regular intake of green tea had healthier gums and teeth than those who drank less green tea. They noted that a cup a day increase in consumption resulted in the shrinking of the above indicators or symptoms.

Unlike black tea, green tea is not fermented, so its active ingredients remain unaltered. Green tea’s protection comes from a powerful antioxidant, a polyphenol called EGCG.[4]

Because our mouths are an oxygen-rich environment closely connected to our blood vessels, they provide an ideal habitat for the growth and rapid proliferation of cancer cells. Scientists have confirmed that green tea not only halts the growth of new oral cancer cells but actually breaks down and kills existing oral cancer cells.  A double-blind study of people with leukoplakia (a precancerous oral condition), showed that those in the green tea group compared to those in the placebo group had significant decreases in the pre-cancerous condition.[5]

This is why we examine your mouth closely at each visit to determine any changes in texture or color that might indicate the presence of oral cancers. This early screening is just one more reason to make sure you don’t miss your regular checkup.

Ingredients in green tea may reduce the risk of getting dental cavities. One study compared two groups. The one that rinsed each night with an alcohol extract of oolong tea leaves had significantly less plaque formation than the group that did not.[6]

Another benefit of green tea is that it stunts the growth of odor causing bacteria, thus helping you maintain a fresh breath.

To fully obtain the benefits, we should have at least four to six cups a day.  Decaffeinated tea is recommended to reduce the side effects associated with caffeine, including anxiety and insomnia.  This seems like an awful lot of tea to ingest, so if you don’t want to drink that much, simply use it as a mouthwash.

If we can be of assistance or answer any of your questions or concerns feel free to contact us.

Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC

290 Carpenter Drive, 200A

Atlanta (Sandy Springs), GA 30328

404-256-3620

info@rightsmilecenter.com

www.rightsmilecenter.com


[1] Journal of Periodontology, March 2009, Vol. 80, No. 3, Pages 372-377 , DOI 10.1902/jop.2009.080510

[2] Ibid

[3] These 3 methods of examining gum tissue are the most common methods utilized by your dentist when you have your teeth cleaned.

[4] Graham HN. Green tea consumption, and polyphenol chemistry. Prev Med 1992;21:334-50.

[5] Li N, Sun Z, Han C, Chen J. The chemopreventive effects of tea on human oral precancerous mucosa lesions. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 1999;220:218-24.

[6] Otake S, Makimura M, Kuroki t, et al. Anticaries effects of polyphenolic compounds from Japanese green tea. Caries Res 1991;25:438-43.

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Author: Drs. Novy and ZoAnna Scheinfeld and Hanna Orland

Our team provides your family with contemporary, rewarding, and comfortable dental care. In our Sandy Springs office, patients come first. Everything we do, from the office design, to our clinical and management training, to the friendly atmosphere we foster in the practice, is for your pleasure and satisfaction. Dr. Scheinfeld, a graduate of Emory University School of Dentistry and her associates understand the importance of balancing health and beauty for an amazing smile. Our comprehensive studies in cosmetic dentistry, restorative dentistry, and general dentistry, supported with state-of-the-art technology, deliver the strong, healthy, beautiful smile you deserve—the smile you'll feel comfortable sharing with your world.

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