At a Monday night press interview before the big football game, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was complimented on his white teeth. The compliment was followed with a questionable piece of advice: Brush with baking soda and tequila to make them even whiter. To which Brady responded (with a smile, as CBS adds): “I love tequila.” This makes a person wonder, is Brady brushing with tequila, or was he simply expressing general approval of the agave spirit? And if he is brushing with tequila, is that actually something a person should do?
We reached out to the Patriots for an answer, but they’re probably a little busy at the moment. From Supercall’s own dabbling in testing alcohol-based beauty tips, it doesn’t sound promising. So looking at dental medicine can give us more sound insight.
One of the biggest issues with homemade toothpaste is what it can do to your enamel, which is the outer layer of your teeth. Baking soda is commonly used as a home remedy for whiter teeth, and it can remove surface stains because sodium bicarbonate is an abrasive substance. But as Colgate notes, “with continual use, you could cause damage to the enamel that coats your teeth.” Tequila isn’t much better. Alcohol has a low pH level, and that acidity can cause enamel erosion as well. There’s not a lot of information out there about mixing the low pH alcohol with high pH baking soda and brushing with it, but there is information about mixing acidic lemon juice with baking soda.
“Lemon juice is acidic and can actually eat away the calcium from the teeth and corrode or destroy it,” Bhandal Dental Practice writes on its blog. Hawaii Family Dental writes of similar concerns, as does a group of dental students from Columbia University College of Dental Medicine that we posed the question to. From a non-medical perspective, Brady’s teeth look healthy, not like they’ve been eroded down.
Still, it wouldn’t be the weirdest thing Brady does. Whether or not he’s brushing with tequila, his teeth are nice—which you have to admit, regardless if you love him or hate him. One thing is certain: Tom Brady likes tequila. Good for him for finding the time to consume any other liquid besides his two-and-a-half gallons of water a day.