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What Causes Tooth Stains?

Do your teeth appear yellow, stained, or duller in color? Over time, you might see a gradual loss of the pearly white appearance in your smile. This alteration can serve as a blow to your confidence. While a dentist can enhance your tooth color through cosmetic dentistry, ideally, you will want to preserve your natural smile as much as possible.

You can best protect your tooth color when you understand what can create these stains on your teeth in the first place. Read on to learn about three primary causes of dental discoloration.

protect tooth color with cosmetic dentistry

Common Reasons You Form Dental Discoloration

Consuming Items with Staining Agents

A major cause of dental discoloration comes from the substances we put in our mouths. For instance, dark-colored foods and beverages often get their hue from tannins. These substances will transfer to your teeth as you eat, absorbing into your tooth enamel to create deep and dark stains.

You cannot remove these stains from your teeth with your usual oral hygiene regimen. You will need targeted treatment from your dentist to lift this discoloration.

Preventative measures like sipping from a straw might reduce the risk of staining your teeth from these food items. But they will not eliminate the chances entirely.

You will want to limit dark foods and drinks in your diet if you want to protect the look of your smile. Also, avoid smoking, chewing, or otherwise using tobacco products, which also contain substances that will stain your teeth over time.

Underlying Dental Issues

Certain dental problems can also cause dental discoloration as a side effect. Cavities can appear as white, brown, or black spots on the surface of your teeth, for example. Treating this early stage of tooth decay will resolve this discoloration too. But the final look of your tooth will depend on the type of filling you receive.

If your tooth appears dull in color, you might have a dead tooth. This condition occurs when the blood flow to the pulp of the tooth becomes restricted or blocked. Impact trauma from a blow to the face may cause this.

While not an emergency, a non-vital tooth could mean your smile is at risk of other dental problems. So you should not ignore new discoloration in your smile. This could point to a larger dental issue requiring urgent evaluation from your dentist.

Factors Outside Your Control

Even with good oral health care, your teeth could be susceptible to staining and yellowing for reasons beyond your control. For example, aging can weaken your tooth enamel, making them more in danger of turning yellower or darker. Some medicines might also generate stains on the teeth as a side effect.

For effective preventative dental care that will preserve your tooth color, consult with your dentist. Cosmetic dental treatments might enhance your smile, but individualized dental attention will help keep your smile looking and feeling its best without extra dental work. Learn more by scheduling a dentist appointment today.