The most common reasons some people choose to take part in Dry January is because it can help aid weight loss, save you money and improve your overall health. Another benefit of going drink-free that is often overlooked is the impact it can have on your oral health.
Reduce your risk of mouth cancer
Excessive alcohol consumption in some cases can lead to mouth cancer. Taking part in Dry January could help you adjust your alcohol intake for the rest of the year, which will benefit you in the long run.
Dehydration and bad breath
Alcohol stops your body from reabsorbing water, leading to dehydration. Not only does dehydration affect your body, it can also lead to halitosis – or bad breath. When your mouth is dry due to dehydration it stops bacteria from being washed away by your saliva. It’s the lingering bacteria on your teeth and gums that causes bad breath.
Sugar and cavities
You might be surprised to learn how much sugar is in most alcoholic drinks. 100ml of your standard lager can contain over 20% of your recommended daily sugar intake, and a large glass of wine can contain the same calorie content as a 40g bar of chocolate. Are you a gin and tonic fan? You could be looking at a third of your recommended daily sugar intake in one glass. All of this sugary content contributes to tooth decay, leading to cavities.
How you can cut back
- Try swapping out your usual mixer with something less sugary.
- Alternate your alcoholic drinks with a glass of water to rinse your mouth and stay hydrated.
- Get your friends involved – make it a challenge!
- If you’re a routine drinker, try a new activity when you’d usually be drinking. Work out how much cash you might save – the difference could shock you.
Unsure about your dental health? Call your nearest Synergy Dental Clinic and we’ll be happy to help.