Coffee & Tea
February 26, 2023

How Long After Teeth Whitening Can You Drink Coffee Safely

Teeth whitening is an accessible and affordable procedure to fix dental discoloration and improve the appearance of our smile. You should avoid dark-colored foods and beverages (including coffee) for at least 48 hours after treatment to preserve the effects of teeth whitening treatment.

Joana Regulacion
Table of Contents:

Teeth whitening is an accessible and affordable procedure to fix dental discoloration and improve the appearance of our smile. “Never underestimate the power of a smile”—unfortunately, coffee can end up darkening your teeth which can dampen your smile.

You should avoid dark-colored foods and beverages (including coffee) for at least 48 hours after treatment to preserve the effects of teeth whitening treatment.

Why drinking coffee after teeth whitening is bad

You should avoid dark-colored foods and beverages like coffee for at least 48 hours after your whitening treatment to preserve the effects.

Just like any other treatment, there are a few things you need to avoid after a teeth whitening procedure. This is especially within the first few hours to a full two days.

A lot of us can’t start our day without a cup of coffee. But unfortunately, coffee is the most notorious when it comes to teeth discoloration mainly due to the beverage’s dark color.


While your teeth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body, it does have tiny pores. When you drink coffee, the tannins in the brew enter your pores and leave deep stains.

Considering the dark color of beverages like coffee, it’s no surprise that it could cause discoloration to your teeth with regular consumption. Don’t be too comfortable even if you haven’t had any teeth-whitening procedures.

You might be thinking that: “maybe lightening my drink would help.” One purpose of coffee creamers aside from improving the texture and flavor of coffee is to lighten it.

Hmm. 🤔 I see where you’re head’s at, but it does not work that way. Not to mention, coffee creamers can be quite bad for you.

The reason for that is that aside from its color, the caffeine content of drinks like coffee or tea 

also contributes to dental stains. Caffeinated beverages dry out the mouth and increase the risk of discoloration by allowing bacteria and food residue to remain.

This effect gets even worse when additives like creamers and sweeteners come into the picture. So, no, cheating your way with coffee lighteners won’t help.

Coffee’s acidity is also another contributor to discoloration as it wears down your teeth enamel. 

All these plus an increased frequency of consumption will likely cause dental stains. I don’t want you to go thinking: “Well, I haven’t undergone whitening procedures, I got nothing to lose.”

Uh, but you do. Drinking coffee, like drinking other dark beverages, always brings the risk of discoloration. 

So, how does teeth whitening work?

Teeth Whitening works by applying bleach on the surface of the teeth. This will then open up the pores of the tooth enamel to lift away stains and other residues.

Exposing your teeth’s open pores by immediately consuming beverages like coffee, will likely diminish the effectiveness of the teeth whitening treatment. 

How long to avoid coffee after teeth whitening

You should stay away from coffee and wine for at least 48 hours after treatment.

This is absolutely critical for preserving whitening results. Your teeth are more porous and susceptible to staining in the first few days after treatment.

Of course, nothing stops you from drinking coffee as you wish!

But if you recently underwent a teeth whitening procedure, you may want to try and hold back on lattes and espressos for a while. Regardless of the type of treatment, completely avoiding coffee and other drinks that may cause stains at least for the first two days is important.  

Procedures done in the dental clinic are usually one-time visits. This means holding off on using your trusty coffee machine may only need to be for two full days.

However, for treatment at home, you might need to go cold turkey on coffee for a bit. Usually, these at-home whitening kits may take one to two weeks of repeated whitener application. 


It may take longer to see results if you use at-home whitening kits. This is because of the lower concentration of whitening agents, it may take two to three weeks to achieve the desired results.

During this entire time, avoiding food and drinks that may stain your teeth might take as long as two weeks. When you have a procedure done at a clinic, it is more effective and longer-lasting overall. Not to mention, it will let you jump back into your daily coffee routine faster.

Home treatment may be more affordable and convenient for some people though.

If you really can’t help it, there’s a way to decrease the exposure of your teeth’s enamel to stains. And it’s not complicated: You can drink coffee from a straw.

It’s not an absolute fix since coffee will still get in your mouth. But the less contact the better. it’s still worth the try and might lessen the staining effects anyway.

A lot of other dental procedures would require you to avoid coffee aside from teeth whitening. Let’s take a look at what they are below: 👇

Coffee after dental cleaning

Just like after teeth whitening, it is advisable to avoid coffee for several hours after your dental cleaning. This is because the dark dyes in coffee can stain your teeth.

These dark components can penetrate the enamel in your teeth. The compounds (likely tannins) can eventually darken and discolor the teeth, making them unappealing.

Coffee after getting braces

Avoiding coffee after getting your braces doesn’t actually have anything to do with your teeth only.

Dark-colored drinks, such as coffee, tea, red wine, and soda, tend to stain your braces' bands and brackets, and well, yeah, your teeth.

If you must drink coffee, tea, red wine, or soda, immediately rinse your mouth with water or mouthwash. And by ‘immediately’ I mean in 25-30 minutes.

Coffee after getting dental implants

Staying away from coffee after a dental implant is another story. We usually take coffee hot, and the heat of the coffee can cause increased bleeding after getting dental implants.

This could be a problem for the surgical site and its healing process. 

 It is critical that you refrain from drinking hot coffee, tea, or hot chocolate for at least two or three days following the procedure. This is at least while your gums are healing from the incision made through them during implant surgery.

Coffee after getting dentures

Hot coffee could make sore gums from dentures worse. If you’re wearing new dentures, you may experience soreness during the first few days.

This is usually where the gums and fitting meet. Wearing dentures can cause a lot of friction if they are not inserted correctly.

This sensitivity can feel really bad when you drink very hot beverages such as tea or coffee.


Can I drink coffee after teeth whitening strips?

Waiting for 48 hours before having coffee —whether you've had a professional teeth whitening treatment or you've whitened your teeth at home— is your safest bet.

How to keep your teeth white while drinking coffee?

Aside from drinking coffee through a straw, brush thoroughly and floss your teeth to avoid staining or darkening.

This is a helpful and important habit to help keep your teeth healthy and pearly white.

It is perhaps one of the easiest ways to avoid the dark pigments from beverages like coffee to settle on the surface and in between teeth.

Even simply rinsing your mouth with water to clean your teeth of food residue and bacteria also helps avoid further dental discoloration. Coffee can bind to 

plaque on your teeth if you don't brush your teeth before drinking it.

Important: Do not brush your teeth immediately after eating or drinking!


Because acid will weaken your enamel, increasing your chances of cavities or tooth decay, you should wait 30-60 minutes after eating or drinking before brushing your teeth. 

What happens if you drink coffee after teeth whitening?

Drinking your favorite cup of coffee or glass of wine can negate the results of the teeth whitening treatment.

It is especially after you have undergone treatment for teeth whitening that you should hold back on dark-colored, stain-inducing food and drinks like coffee.

Drinking coffee when the pores on your teeth’s enamel are still open will make the teeth more susceptible to staining. This is just going to make the teeth-whitening procedure useless.

Wait 2 days to start drinking coffee after teeth whitening

48 hours is how long to avoid coffee after teeth whitening. This includes dark-colored foods and other dark-colored beverages too. This simple precaution can help preserve the whitening effects.

When you drink coffee, the tannins in the brew enter your pores and leave deep stains. Because coffee is acidic, it can wear away the enamel over time, resulting in more stains. 

While your teeth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body, it does have tiny pores. You don’t want to waste your money paying for this  It helps for you to know “how long after teeth whitening can I drink coffee.”

About the author
Joana Regulacion
Joana is an engaging content writer and dynamic virtual assistant. ✍️ She helps business owners and entrepreneurs deliver a clear message to everyone and attract and engage the perfect audience. She is a proud wife, mom, and animal lover.‍ She believes that her love for learning new things is her key to writing engaging content.

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