Is tea bad for your teeth?

Everyone loves a good cuppa. In fact, tea is the second most frequently consumed beverage in the UK. Only water is more popular.

But with all the tea we drink, should we be worried about whether it affects our teeth? In this post, we’ll answer this question.

Ways that tea is bad for your teeth


Tea can stain your teeth. You can tell when someone drinks a lot of tea because they will have yellow or brown stains on their teeth.

The reason tea can stain your teeth is that it contains tannins. Tannins are yellow or brownish substances that give tea its colour.

To stop tea from staining your teeth, try rinsing your mouth after drinking it.


While tea itself doesn’t cause cavities, the ingredients added to it can.

Take sugar for example. If you add sugar to your tea, then the sugar can increase your risk of cavities.

Honey is another example. Honey is an ingredient that some people add to their tea, but it’s also high in sugar, which can lead to cavities.

So it’s best to drink tea without sugar and honey. If you do want your tea to be sweet, however, then try using a sugar-free sweetener instead.

Lemon is another thing else that people add to their tea. The problem with lemon is not that it’s sweet but that it’s acidic. The acidity can erode your enamel.

So ideally it’s best not to put lemon in your tea, or at least use it sparingly.

Ways that tea is good for your teeth

Now that we’ve gone over the ways tea can be bad for your teeth, let’s go over the ways it can actually benefit your teeth.


Black and green tea contain fluoride, which helps your teeth to ward off decay.

Fluoride is a mineral that is found in water and most foods, but it’s especially high in tea. It’s also found in toothpaste too.

The great thing about fluoride is that it’s an easy way to make your teeth stronger and healthier.


Another good thing about tea is that it contains polyphenols. Polyphenols are micronutrients from plant-based foods that help to kill bacteria.

Thanks to its polyphenols, tea can actually reduce gum inflammation, gum disease, and even bad breath.


Some teas are very good at reducing acid in your mouth. This is beneficial for your teeth because acid, if left to act, can erode your enamel.

The best teas at reducing acid are green tea (which typically has a pH of between 7 and 10 – where anything below 7 is acidic) and chamomile, mint, and fennel teas, which have a pH of between 6 and 7.


So is tea good for your teeth? The answer is yes. Tea helps to fight bacteria in your mouth and can also reduce your mouth’s acidity. So don’t feel guilty about drinking tea.

If you’re looking for something even better than tea though, try plain water. Unlike tea, water won’t stain your teeth.

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