Teeth discoloration is enough to make anyone hide their smile. But there are plenty of ways to fix this issue! With the popularity of cosmetic dentistry, it is now possible to have the glowing smile you have always wanted.
However, natural teeth can darken for several reasons, and getting rid of this discoloration can be challenging.
Some tooth staining is only cosmetic, but it can also indicate a problem with the tooth or possibly a medical condition. Whatever the cause, discolored teeth can reduce your confidence and inhibit smiling and talking with other people.
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What Causes Teeth Discoloration?
There are many reasons why your teeth become stained. Most teeth discoloration involves staining of the enamel on the external surface of teeth. But, changes can occur inside a tooth that changes its color from the inside out.
Here are the most common causes of teeth discoloration.
1. Certain foods and drinks
Coffee and tea are common culprits of tooth staining. Both of these beverages contain tannins that can build up on enamel and leave dark stains. To reduce coffee and tea stains:
- Drink the beverage in one sitting instead of sipping it throughout the day.
- Adding milk can reduce the staining effect of the tannins.
- Rinse or drink water after drinking your coffee or tea.
Dark fruits and berries such as blackberries and cherries contain dark pigments that stain teeth.
Dark colas and sports drinks erode enamel which makes them appear darker.
Tomato and soy sauces with dark pigments can stain enamel.
2. Tobacco products
We all know that tobacco does far more harm to our overall health than teeth staining, but it also detracts from a beautiful smile. The tar in tobacco products produces a dark brown residue on enamel that is really hard to get off. Nicotine also contributes to staining by turning your teeth yellow.
3. Some medications
Two well-known drugs that cause staining are tetracycline and doxycycline. Specifically, these medications affect young children’s enamel as their teeth develop. A child will start to develop permanent gray or brown stains, which presents a significant dental challenge.
Some antihistamines, mouth rinses, and antihypertensive medications also discolor teeth. That why it’s imperative that you always discussed the possible side effects of any medication with your healthcare provider.
4. Certain illnesses and their treatment
believe it or not, some medical conditions can affect tooth enamel and affect the color of your teeth. These conditions include anorexia, HIV, chemotherapy, radiation, metabolic diseases, rickets, and calcium deficiency.
If you are born with thicker enamel, your teeth will appear whiter and resist stains more easily! Unfortunately, there’s also a genetic defect that causes a blue-gray or yellow-brown color stain on your teeth. It’s called dentinogenesis imperfecta. There’s also amelogenesis imperfecta, which is a condition that “causes teeth to be unusually small , discolored, pitted or grooved, and prone to rapid wear and breakage.”
6. Poor oral hygiene
Neglecting brushing, flossing, and regular professional teeth cleaning causes plaque and tartar build-up, which can cause staining and discolored cavities to form.
Enamel wears down with age and exposes more underlying dentin, giving teeth a darker and more yellow appearance.
8. Dental trauma
Injury to a tooth from a fall or other accident can cause the tooth’s internal bleeding that leaves a dark stain. The longer this discoloration goes untreated, the more permanent it stains the tooth. Discoloration after trauma usually indicates the nerve inside the tooth has died and requires dental treatment.
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Teeth Stain vs. Cavity
Noticing a dark spot on your tooth is enough to alarm anyone. However, thinking a discoloration is a stain when it is actually a cavity may lead to more complex and expensive dental treatment.
A single brown, gray, or black spot on your tooth more often indicates a cavity caused by dental plaque accumulation. If the discoloration spreads across the surface of a tooth, it is probably a stain.
Stains do not cause any symptoms and won’t cause harm to the structure of the tooth.
An untreated cavity damages the tooth and can cause one or more symptoms such as:
Cavities can cause sensitivity to hot or cold isolated to one tooth. Other conditions such as gingivitis and teeth grinding can cause sensitivity to several or all your teeth.
The longer a cavity remains untreated, the greater the likelihood you’ll develop a toothache. As the cavity gets deeper, the tooth’s dental pulp or nerve becomes inflamed and painful.
3. Visible hole
Small cavities can expand quickly within a tooth and eventually cause a visible hole or broken tooth.
The cause of teeth discoloration may require professional evaluation from your dentist. However, delaying the removal of a stain may not have any consequences.
How To Get Rid of Yellow Staining On Teeth
Determining the cause of your teeth discoloration is the first step in whitening your teeth and enhancing your smile. Stains caused by medications, illnesses, or dental trauma always require evaluation and treatment by your dentist.
Several dental treatments can whiten stains that are permanently incorporated into the enamel and dentin of your teeth. These treatments include:
- Dental bonding: Bonding uses tooth-colored dental resin to cover stained areas on the front of teeth. This procedure may not require the removal of your tooth for placement.
- Dental veneers: Dental veneers are popular and provide a more permanent solution than bonding. These do require removing some enamel from the front surface of your teeth.
- Crowns: Crowns require more tooth removal but offer the best solution under certain circumstances.
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Teeth Whitening To Remove Tooth Stains
For external surface stains, you might see success from professional teeth whitening teeth services. The most common ways to whiten yellow teeth and remedy teeth discoloration include:
- Improved oral home care: If you want whiter teeth, you need a regular brushing and flossing routine. Brushing as soon as possible after eating foods or drinking beverages that easily stain teeth can help prevent discolored teeth.
- Regular dental check-ups: To prevent permanent effects of surface stains, consider contacting Lasry Dental Clinic for professional teeth cleaning! Regular comprehensive dental exams can also detect cavities early before they cause dark stains.
- Home whitening products. Whitening strips, gels, mouth rinses, and specialized toothbrushes can help remove minor surface stains between professional cleaning and whitening visits. Consult your dentist about the best products to whiten your smile.
- Professional teeth whitening. This popular procedure requires little time and no dental anesthetic. It is less expensive than most cosmetic dental procedures and effectively whitens many discolored teeth.