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Dr. Xixi Wu

Dr. Xixi Wu
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What Happens to Your Teeth and Gums When You Eat or Drink Things that Are Too Hot?

Posted on 1/25/2021 by Hilton Israelson, DDS
What Happens to Your Teeth and Gums When You Eat or Drink Things that Are Too Hot?Whenever you drink something too hot, it can result in temperature changes that lead to expansion or contraction. A too-hot food or drink may also lead to burns or similar irritations.

What the Research Shows

One study in the Journal of International Cancer revealed that a link exists between esophageal cancer and scalding hot tea. Specifically, the hot temperature is what increases the risk of tumors. Medical practitioners support this finding, as they note that years of exposure to hot temperature foods increases an oral or esophageal cancer risk. That is because any type of hot liquid or fluid has the potential to damage the lining of the esophagus or throat. Also, when the temperature of a food or beverage is super-hot, a thermal injury frequently occurs. A repeated thermal injury, of this type, can cause a chronic inflammation and trigger the development of cancer cells.

What to Do If Your Drink Something Too Hot

Many people, if they eat or drink something too hot, will try to find some ice water to drink. However, ice water is not a good solution, as the ice can crack a tooth or cause further dental damage. If you feel the discomfort of a too-hot food, get a cup of water, at room temperature, to treat the injury. Doing so will pose less of a shock to your mouth and will not damage the enamel or gums. Do not replace one temperature extreme with another, as it can pose a threat to the health of your gums and teeth.

Be careful about eating or drinking anything too hot. Wait for a food or drink to cool down a little first. If you experience a burn inside your mouth, give us a call so we can examine it. Also, if you have not done so already, schedule an appointment for a comprehensive periodontal exam. Keeping your gums healthy should always be made a priority.

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