If you drink wine at night, make sure to finish up at least 30 minutes before bedtime
After a long day at work, many people are happy to unwind with a glass of wine. While there are a number of supposed health benefits to regularly consuming wine, there's one big downside to slugging back the beverage before bedtime: The habit can wreak havoc on your choppers, as E! News recently reported.
All wine — including reds, whites and rosés — contains acid, which weakens enamel, the protective coating on your teeth, NYC-based dentist Dr. Sivan Finkel told E! News. Wine temporarily softens enamel for around 30 minutes, so brushing your teeth immediately after polishing off a glass could damage the enamel in its weakened state, the Mayo Clinic noted.
This news puts wine-drinkers who care about maintaining a bright smile in a tough spot: Allowing wine to linger will increase the risk for staining teeth. Plus, a 2009 study revealed that it's not just red wine that does damage: White wines make it easier for other staining substances (like coffee) to seep in deeper and make their mark.
But all in all, the dilemma doesn't mean you have to choose between wine and healthy teeth. There are a couple of ways to keep your pearly whites strong when consuming wine, Finkel noted.
His preferred method? Swish water around your mouth between (and probably after) glasses. This will help prevent acid from settling on your teeth, so you can have your wine and your perfect smile, too.