On a hot summer day, there are few things better in life than an ice-cold, frosty brew. Whether it is in celebration, to relax or de-stress, hoppy beverages serve us in many ways August 5, was a chance to celebrate National Beer Day with a cold one or two, but we hope you didn’t forget about your oral health! Some health experts warn us against drinking too much beer because it can add to our waistline, but others praise moderate drinking for its heart-healthy benefits. Yes, you read that right – benefits. Follow these guidelines whenever you reach for a cold one (presuming you’re of age, of course!) to make sure that your oral health isn’t suffering while reaping the rewards of knocking back a few.
Keep your mouth in peak condition
There are so many varieties of beer with different flavors, levels of carbonation, hops, alcohol and ingredients, and some are worse than others for bad breath. The stronger the flavor, the more it’s going to linger on your breath. You’ve probably encountered someone who drank only one or two beers, but their breath smelled like they finished off a case. While the aroma of a sudsy mug may be pleasing to the nose, something unfortunate happens as it enters the body. There are a number of reasons why beer causes bad breath, such as the acetone and ethanol that are thrown into the mix.
Alcohol also dehydrates you, leaving little saliva in your mouth to wash away the volatile sulfur compounds that let out the stench. This is why you wake up the next morning with dry mouth and bad breath that can clear any room. You can’t hide that beer from anyone!
The benefits of beer
Wine gets all the praise as a healthy alcoholic beverage, but Forbes reported that a number of studies have shown beer to have the same of same positive effects on the body. In fact, moderate consumption of beer decreased the chance of having a heart attack in men by 30 to 35 percent. Beer in moderation raises high-density lipoprotein, better known as good cholesterol, which protects against type 2 diabetes and the likelihood of having blood clots.
“People should realize that a little bit of alcohol on a regular basis decreases the risks of aging,” Curtis Ellison, professor of medicine and public health at the Boston University School of Medicine, said to Forbes. Ellison specializes in researching the relationship between chronic diseases and alcohol consumption.
Celebrate without the negative effects
On August 5 – or really any day you’d like to celebrate National Beer Day – you can rest assured that a few mugs of frosty brew aren’t going to have negative effects on the body. But to ensure that you’re not going to end up with a cavity-filled mouth due to beer caused dry mouth, you can take a few precautions – we hope you did! If not, be suyre to follow these tips whenever you reach for a frosty one.
First, make sure that you’re drinking enough water. We know you want to fill your belly up with craft beers, not water, but good ol’ H2O is good for you! Water cleanses your palate – i.e., you can try another beer with a fresh start – and it moisturizes your mouth. Think of it this way: When you work out, you prep the body for what’s to come with plenty of fluids. Think of drinking beer the same way (no, we’re not saying it’s OK to swap the gym for a beer).
If you are constantly waking up with dry mouth after drinking, consider changing your toothpaste and mouthwash for ones without drying agents. Choose an alcohol-free mouthwash and toothpaste without sodium lauryl sulfate to ensure that you’re not just creating more issues in the mouth.