To prevent having purple teeth, you should brush your teeth immediately after drinking deeply colored red wine.

Answer: False.

Although tooth enamel is the hardest tissue in the body, it’s extremely susceptible to staining and the erosion caused by acids, a primary component in all wines. Yet experts actually recommend you wait at least 30 minutes after drinking wine before brushing. “After drinking wine, your mouth is an acidic environment. Brushing the acid into your teeth increases the risk of erosion,” warns Dr. John Aylmer. Better still, brush before drinking as well, to minimize the amount of plaque that wine can stick to in the first place.

Naturally, red wine is the usual suspect for purple teeth because it contains a large amount of chromogens, pigment-producing substances that bind to teeth and cause staining. (Chromogens are also found in coffee and tea, two other classic culprits.) Tannins, abundant in grapes skins, aid in this binding effect. However, white wine is no innocent bystander. White wine is typically higher in acid, which weakens your teeth’s enamel and leaves them more vulnerable to colorful food and drink.

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