Have you noticed that your teeth do not look as pearly white as they used to? Over time, your teeth may start to appear darker, duller, or stained. This could lead to a blow to your self-esteem that may impact other aspects of your life.
Fortunately, your dentist can offer teeth whitening solutions at their office that will enhance your smile’s appearance. But you can avoid this cosmetic dental damage when you know which factors could lead to these tooth stains in the first place. Read to find three of the primary causes of dental discoloration and learn how you can protect your tooth color.
3 Reasons You Might Form Tooth Stains
Consuming Substances with Staining Agents
A common reason that people form dental discoloration is from foods, drinks, and other substances that we put in our mouths. Dark-colored items like red wine, tea, and coffee get their dark hue from tannins. This substance transfers to the teeth where they absorb into the tooth enamel, forming stains that will not go away with your usual oral hygiene routine.
You might see your teeth gradually turn yellow as well form dark stains too. Tobacco can also stain your teeth this way, so avoid smoking or chewing these products to preserve the look and feel of your smile.
Pay attention to your smile’s appearance if you know you consume these substances with staining agents. Though you can take action to reduce the risk, you will not eliminate your chances of forming discoloration entirely. Ask your dentist about cosmetic dental treatments if you do notice any stains on your smile.
Underlying Dental Problems
Tooth discoloration can also happen as a symptom of an underlying dental problem. For instance, cavities can appear as brown, black, or white spots on the tooth, indicating an area where enamel has sustained damage.
A dental injury could mean damage to your tooth pulp, which can restrict or block blood flow to the tooth. This may make the tooth appear dull in color. If you suffer a blow to the face and think you hurt your tooth, call your dentist about this accident as soon as you can.
Teeth may also grow discolored due to poor oral hygiene. If plaque or food particles remain on your smile, it could cause the enamel to become yellow or dark. Make sure you clean your teeth as well as possible.
Other Factors Outside Patient Control
Even with good at-home and in-office dental care, you might see stains forming on your teeth. This is because sometimes dental discoloration occurs because of factors outside your control.
Some medicines can make your teeth discolored permanently. Aging can also weaken your dental structure over time. This makes the teeth more susceptible to yellowing and darkening.
Consult your dentist to find preventative care that will protect your teeth’s appearance and health. Cosmetic dental treatment can restore and enhance your tooth color, but you should still preserve the natural structure as much as you can.