Dental Fun Facts

TRUE OR FALSE – Apple Cider Vinegar Can Be Used for Teeth WhiteningLivestrong

FALSE (well…kind of true but not recommended).

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) has become a well-known remedy for things such as; controlling blood sugar, weight loss and energy, reducing bacteria such as salmonella, supporting immune functions, skin acne, and a cleaning aid. However, the dental benefits are debatable. There are claims that ACV can help whiten teeth, fight tooth decay and help chronic gum infections, but there is not a lot of scientific research to back up these claims or confirm its safety.

What we do know for sure is that acid is bad for your enamel. ACV has a pH level of 3.075, that’s more harmful than coffee and stomach acid. This high of an acidity level can wear down enamel over time and will eventually expose dentin (the sensitive layer of the tooth). The tooth enamel is left in a weakened state after coming into contact with ACV and can be worsened if you brush your teeth right after drinking it or if you gargle it in your mouth.

If you do use ACV, wait a half hour after consuming the it (or anything acidic for that matter) before you brush your teeth to avoid removing the enamel. You can also dilute the acv with water (1 teaspoon of acv with 8 ounces of water) or try drinking it through a straw for the health benefits.

As for whitening your teeth, you can try other at home remedies that will cause less damage to your enamel overtime such as; brushing with activated charcoal, baking soda paste, strawberry salt and baking soda scrub or even coconut oil.

Apple Cider Vinegar Risks and Side Effects

Because of its high acidity, drinking a lot of apple cider vinegar can damage your teeth, hurt your throat, and upset your stomach. Also:

  • Though some studies have been promising, there’s still little to prove that drinking apple cider vinegar helps you lose weight.
  • It may also cause your potassium levels to drop too low. Your muscles and nerves need that nutrient to work the way they should.
  • Another study of people with type 1 diabetes found that apple cider vinegar slows the rate food and liquids move out of your stomach to your intestines. Slower digestion makes it harder to control your blood sugar level.
  • It might cause some medications to not work as well. These include diabetes and heart disease drugs as well as diuretics (medicines that help your body get rid of water and salt) and laxatives.
  • And of course, its strong taste might not be for everyone.

In short, apple cider vinegar probably won’t hurt you. You can try it because it’s calorie-free, adds lots of flavor to food, and has health benefits. But it isn’t a miracle cure.

Michelle Lee Photography/

Apple cider vinegar can do everything from settle an upset stomach to cure acne and hiccups to help you lose weight. And that doesn’t even begin to cover all of the ways apple cider vinegar can benefit your health. But before you pick up a glass of this magical elixir, beware: This natural tonic could also have a negative effect on your teeth.

Apple cider vinegar can erode tooth enamel, research shows. While many studies have examined the effects of acidic foods such as soft drinks and fruit juices, there’s research showing that the acetic acid found in vinegar puts it in the same category. In one study researchers placed the enamel of wisdom teeth in different vinegar samples with pH levels ranging from 2.7 to 3.9. After four hours, the vinegars removed up to 20 percent of minerals from the teeth, the study reported. Granted, this experiment didn’t take into account the pH of the saliva of the human mouth, which neutralizes the acidity in the food we eat. But it’s clear that apple cider vinegar has its downsides. For more on the cons, find out why you should never, ever take shots of apple cider vinegar.

Still, is this reason enough to give up on apple cider vinegar forever? Don’t even think about it! Just prevent damage to your teeth by diluting the vinegar in water and drinking it through a straw. Jaimi Jansen, a personal trainer and president of Santa Cruz CORE Fitness + Rehab in California, recommends mixing 10 parts water to 1 part vinegar. And afterward, rinse your mouth with water to make sure the acid is completely cleared away.

Read on, to make sure you don’t fall for these apple cider vinegar myths, either.

Will Apple Cider Vinegar Harm My Teeth?

The effects of apple cider vinegar cider on your teeth

You may have seen articles praising the health benefits of apple cider vinegar. Some insist you should drink it every day, or even before every meal. You may not know, however, that frequent consumption of apple cider vinegar actually can harm your teeth.

Why does this happen? It is because of its high acidic quality. Containing malic acid and acetic acid, apple cider vinegar has an average pH between 2.5 and 3.0. Distilled water, a neutral solution, has a pH of 7.0.

The low pH of apple cider vinegar makes it a threat to your oral health if precautions are not taken. If you regularly consume apple cider vinegar for its reported health benefits, you always should dilute the substance.

Problems with undiluted apple cider vinegar

Undiluted apple cider vinegar is acidic enough to weaken the enamel on your teeth. Weakened enamel increases your vulnerability to tooth decay and cavities, plus cause your teeth to be sensitive. Individuals with a particularly heavy consumption of undiluted apple cider vinegar also may experience swelling or burns inside their oral cavity.

Certain websites recommend that people use apple cider vinegar as a mouthwash. Do not do this! This can cause major problems for your oral health.

How to use apple cider vinegar effectively

Dilute any apple cider vinegar into a solution that contains at least five parts of water for every part of vinegar. Apple cider vinegar also is available in pill form, which may be the safest means to ingest it while protecting your oral health.

It is strongly recommended that you never drink apple cider vinegar straight from the bottle.

Natural remedies can have a greater effect on your oral health than you might realize. If you ever have any questions, contact Pittsford Dental Excellence Center at (585) 248-2575. A member of our staff will be happy to assist you.

Integrative Dentistry

Integrative medicine determines how and why illness occurs. It aims to restore health by addressing the root causes of disease for each individual. Integrative medical practitioners view the body as one integrated system, not a collection of independent organs divided up by medical specialties.

Integrative medicine based dentistry is the application of the principles and practices of integrative medicine with the practice of the art and science of dentistry.

If you would like to know more download the guide on this page or contact us today.

Pittsford Dental Excellence Center is here to serve patients in the area of Fairport, Pittsford, and Rochester, NY.

If you’ve been hearing about apple cider vinegar a lot lately, it’s because the health world has fallen in love with it. Health bloggers and influencers insist it can help with everything from weight loss to lowering inflammation, but have any of these claims been verified? And can drinking something acidic like vinegar every day actually do more harm than good when it comes to our teeth?

Does Apple Cider Vinegar Have Any Verified Health Benefits?

Even though there have been some interesting studies illustrating the possibility of certain health benefits, when it comes to concrete evidence, the research around apple cider vinegar is lacking.

While many people claim it can help with weight loss, there is no compelling evidence that shows a correlation between drinking apple cider vinegar and losing weight. However, a few studies have shown a connection between a reduced glucose response and drinking apple cider vinegar, and there seems to be some evidence connecting consuming apple cider vinegar and increased “short-term satiety.”

Bottom line: drinking apple cider vinegar may help with steadying blood sugar and short-term feelings of hunger, but science can’t say for sure.

Can Drinking Apple Cider Vinegar Daily Harm Teeth?

Like other vinegars, apple cider vinegar is acidic, and while there is a study that shows a connection between vinegar consumption and enamel erosion, it should be noted that this particular study soaked human teeth in vinegar for eight hours — not a typical scenario for most people. And while it doesn’t have any specific recommendations around drinking or not drinking apple cider vinegar, the American Dental Association agrees that “prolonged contact” between teeth and acidic foods or drinks like apple cider vinegar can put teeth at risk for enamel erosion.

Bottom line: if you’re staying vigilant with your daily oral care, occasionally drinking a small bit of apple cider vinegar is probably fine. A great way to keep your oral health in tip-top shape? Brush with Pronamel toothpaste. Brushing twice a day with Pronamel Strong & Bright not only protects teeth from cavities, but it also helps polish away stains by delivering fluoride to actively help strengthen enamel.

You’ve probably read about apple cider vinegar (ACV) and its ability to cure a seemingly endless array of ailments—everything from athlete’s foot to upset stomach, and even cancer.

Fact or Fiction

Some clinical studies on apple cider vinegar support claims for promoting weight loss, lowering cholesterol, and regulating blood sugar. On the other hand, claims that ACV can prevent or reverse tooth decay are misguided. Using liquid ACV as a pre-brush mouthwash is an especially bad idea and here’s why.

Like soda and lemon juice, apple cider vinegar is highly acidic, typically with a pH level of 3.0 or lower. The pH scale runs from 1-14; levels lower than 7 are acidic as opposed to alkalizing. Foods and beverages high in acid strip away protective tooth enamel and hasten permanent tooth erosion.

Apple Cider Vinegar Precautions and Negative Side Effects

Rinsing with concentrated doses of apple cider vinegar will not only damage your teeth but can also cause swelling or burns inside the mouth and esophagus. According to the Centers for Disease Control, other potential risks of long-term use of ACV include:

  • Indigestion
  • Throat irritation
  • Low potassium
  • Disruption of the body’s acid-base balance

Safer Ways to Consume Apple Cider Vinegar and Minimize Tooth Exposure

If apple cider vinegar is already part of your health regimen, you might not have to give it up entirely. Consider these options instead:

  • Dilute ACV in water: Try mixing 1-2 tablespoons of vinegar with 8 ounces of water.
  • Drink it through a straw to avoid direct contact with your teeth.
  • Rinse with water after taking it.
  • Don’t brush right away! To prevent further enamel damage, wait at least 30 minutes before brushing your teeth to give your saliva a chance to naturally wash away the acid.
  • Take ACV as a supplement in pill form: These contain a dehydrated form of ACV but the amount can vary from brand to brand. According to a Healthline report, one capsule typically contains about 500 mg, which is equivalent to 2 liquid teaspoons (10 ml). Like its liquid form, these products are not FDA regulated. For the safest options, look for brands tested by a third party such as ConsumerLab.

Dr. Ruth’s Blog

The popularity of apple cider as a health drink has increase over the last six years. However, when taken on daily doses, it highly increases the risks to develop side effects. Especially when the natural tonic beverage is not properly diluted.

Although a number of websites encourage to use apple cider vinegar as mouthwash, we cannot emphasize strongly enough how bad of an idea this is. . Its acetic acid content can have irritating effects on the skin, mucous membranes located in the mouth and throat; affecting the tooth enamel and potentially increasing risk of cavities.

It contains both malic acid and acetic acid. The average pH of apple cider vinegar is between 2.5 and 3.0. Given the low pH of apple cider vinegar, it can cause significant damage to your oral health if it is not consumed with caution. Some drinkers can experience swelling or burns in the tissues of their oral cavity.

If you’re going to ingest apple cider vinegar, there are a few things that Dr. Ruth Rojas recommends you can do to mitigate the risk of hurting your enamel:

  1. Sip it with a straw, minimizing the direct contact with your teeth.
  2. You should never drink it directly from a bottle. Dilute any apple cider vinegar into a solution that has at least 5 to 10 parts of water to every part of vinegar.
  3. Mix it with other food types to balance pH levels. Example, with olive oil to create a salad dressing.
  4. When finished drinking apple cider, swish your mouth only with water. This will help release and flush away the acidic elements that are hiding between your teeth.
  5. Wait about 30 minutes before brushing your teeth after having apple cider vinegar. If you brush too soon after, the sugars and acids from the apple will scrub off your enamel. Use water to flush as much out before brushing.
  6. Increase your dental Hygiene Checkups for professional cleanings. Since drinking Apple cider increases the appearances of stains and cavities.
  7. Dilute one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar preferably in 8 ounces of water.
  8. Don’t use mouthwash after having apple cider vinegar.
  9. A Proper oral hygiene by brushing and flossing everyday will especially help.
  10. Visit us at Dr. Ruth Rojas for a special cleaning to keep you safe from serious oral issues.

For any questions about your oral health, please don’t hesitate to give our friendly office staff at

Dr. Rojas at (941) 951-7711.

Apple Cider Vinegar – Does it Have Oral Health Benefits?

Consuming apple cider vinegar might be a good idea, as it could help support your health in myriad ways. Some of the benefits that are associated with apple cider vinegar include its ability to fight bacteria, lower blood sugar levels in those with type 2 diabetes, support cardiovascular health, protect against cancer, and aid in weight loss.

Those are some impressive benefits, right? But think twice before you start taking apple cider vinegar shots.

Why shouldn’t you take apple cider vinegar shots? Continue reading for the answer.

Beware: It Can Damage the Enamel of Your Teeth!

You do your best to keep your teeth and gums healthy by brushing, flossing, and seeing your dentist regularly. But if you are taking apple cider vinegar shots because you think that you’re doing something great for your body, what you need to know is that you’re doing some damage to your teeth. Oh no!

How could apple cider vinegar be good for so many aspects of your health, but bad for your dental health? Well, it boils down to the acetic acid in it. When your teeth are exposed to acidic apple cider vinegar, damage to the enamel occurs. And you definitely don’t want that!

Just how acidic is apple cider vinegar? Well, it has a pH of 2.5 to 3. So, just as it’s best to avoid dousing your teeth with other acidic beverages, like soda, sparkling water, and lemon juice, you should use caution if you plan on drinking this vinegar.

The more your chompers are exposed to acidic substances, like vinegar, the more likely it will be that you’ll end up with erosion of the strong enamel that covers the teeth. Over time, the damage might increase your risk of decay and sensitivity. Plus, when your enamel is compromised, your teeth won’t look as white either.

Note: Taking apple cider vinegar shots isn’t a good idea because doing so will expose your teeth to the damaging acid. So it goes without saying that you also shouldn’t be using this vinegar as a mouthwash.

How to Consume Apple Cider Vinegar While Protecting Your Teeth

Good news! You don’t have to miss out on the benefits that apple cider vinegar might provide. To take it safely, consider:

  • Diluting it with water (for example, 2 tablespoons of vinegar can be added to an 8-ounce glass of water)
  • Consuming only small amounts
  • Using it as an ingredient in meals, such as in salad dressings
  • Drinking it through a straw
  • Rinsing your mouth with some water right after drinking it
  • Waiting about 30 minutes or more before brushing your teeth after drinking it
  • Taking apple cider vinegar pills

Let Your Dentist Keep a Close Eye on Your Teeth

If you choose to consume apple cider vinegar, it’s important to take care of your teeth at home, as well as see your dentist for checkups and cleanings. Your dentist can let you know if the vinegar is doing more harm to your teeth than you realize. Plus, a dental pro can also offer tips on how to protect your enamel, and provide treatments to combat sensitivity.

In the end, it is all about balance and strategy when it comes to using apple cider vinegar for your health. You can certainly have your apple cider vinegar without damaging your chompers, provided that you take it correctly. But if you want to be absolutely sure that the vinegar isn’t harming your pearly whites, consider signing up for a dental insurance plan that will make it easy and affordable to see your dentist on a regular basis.

Sources:

Why Apple Cider Vinegar is Bad For Your Teeth

Apple cider vinegar: we’ve read some articles that believe that directly applying apple cider vinegar to teeth is a good way to clean or whiten them. We at Whitehorse Dental in Blackburn do not recommend this practice and are eager to explain why.

Apple Cider Vinegar = Acid = Enamel Erosion

Regular intake of apple cider vinegar can seriously speed up enamel erosion.

To put it into context, water, with a pH level of 7 has a neutral level of acidity, while stomach acid being extremely acidic, has a pH level of 1. Apple cider vinegar has a pH level of around 3, making it highly acidic.

The environment within the mouth only needs to be at pH 5.5 for enamel to begin dissolving. Therefore exposing teeth to an acidic pH level of 3 daily is detrimental to your tooth enamel.

Within weeks, the enamel can become significantly eroded.

It is important to remember that enamel does not recover or regenerate. This can lead to a lifetime of extremely sensitive teeth because once the enamel is gone, your teeth are now exposed to all sorts of damaging agents.

Clean teeth better, without apple cider vinegar

We’ve previously written a short guide on how to clean your teeth more effectively.

To give your teeth a thorough clean and keep them in a healthy state, here are 3 quick tips:

  1. Use a soft brush with fluoride toothpaste
  2. Drink water between meals and wait 30 minutes after meals before brushing
  3. Clean in between teeth with floss or interdental brushes

Whiten teeth safely

If you’re wanting to give your teeth a nice white glow, the safest way to do so is to have them professionally whitened by your dentist.

At our dental clinic in Blackburn, we offer two options for safe and effective teeth whitening.

To find out more about enamel care or teeth whitening, speak to one of our friendly dentists at Whitehorse Dental.

Image credit: “Apple man” by Andrea Schaffer is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Apple cider vinegar teeth

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