The Troubling Damage Apple Cider Vinegar Can Do To Your Teeth

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is believed to have many benefits. According to Very Well Health, it has the potential to treat dandruff, control blood sugar, combat acne, cure hiccups, and more. It's even said to aid weight loss with many people adopting what's referred to as the apple cider vinegar diet, which involves drinking it before every meal (via Harvard Health Publishing). But drinking apple cider vinegar (especially on a frequent basis) has its downsides as well — it can cause some serious problems for your teeth.

As Mazen Natour, D.M.D., a Manhattan-based dentist and prosthodontist, told Shape that apple cider vinegar is very acidic and can actually cause tooth erosion. He explained, "Enamel is the hardest substance in the human body — said to be 10 times stronger than bone and the only substance in nature stronger than diamond. That's because its role is to protect your teeth from bacteria. But acid can erode your teeth enamel, and ACV is very acidic." Yikes!

Apple cider vinegar leads to a loss of tooth enamel

So, how do you know if your apple cider vinegar consumption is causing problems to your teeth? You need to learn to look for the signs of tooth erosion. According to Listerine, the three tell-tale signs of tooth erosion are discoloration, increased sensitivity, and any chips or cracks. And while the damage probably won't completely be attributed to your intake of apple cider vinegar, cutting back could help to prevent further problems.

But if you insist on continuing to drink apple cider vinegar, you should rethink how you serve it up for yourself. "If you are going to drink apple cider vinegar, dilute it with water and don't let it sit in your mouth for too long," Julie Brann, D.M.D., a dentist in Phoenix, recommended to Eating Well. Simply mix it with water or one of your favorite drinks — it will probably make it taste better too.