What Stains Teeth?

Surfing social media, you’ve likely seen numerous ads about at-home teeth whitening. Or, if you’re more old school, you might have noticed magazine advertisements or television commercials about the importance of a bright white smile. If you’re familiar with this blog platform, you’ve read about the in-office teeth whitening services we offer. And even if you have somehow emerged unscathed by the above, you have likely looked at your teeth and noticed they look more like the color of corn than cotton. In this blog, we will examine teeth whitening trends and offer our advice. 

First, what stains teeth?  

Believe it or not, most teeth are not naturally white. They have a yellowish hue. However, somewhere along the line, celebrity smiles convinced Americans that white teeth arethe epitome of beauty. However, in reality, several things conspire to stain teeth: 

  • Food
  • Drinks
  • Smoking
  • Stain-causing particles within the tooth enamel stain from within 
  • Age

How to prevent dental stains

As with most health-related matters, prevention is key: 

  • Avoid foods and beverages that stain your teeth
  • Quit smoking (and never start!) 
  • Brush at least twice daily for three minutes
  • Rinsing with mouthwash 
  • Floss daily
  • Chew only sugar-free gum between meals
  • See your dentist at least twice a year.

Which foods stain?  

Most foods that are bright or bold in color stain teeth. These include red pasta sauces, berries, and bright curries.

What drinks cause teeth staining? 

As with food, bold-colored drinks cause teeth staining. So, avoid red wines, coffee and tea, and even dark sodas. Daily consumption may darken your smile. According to Colgate.com, teas of all colors erode enamel and have been shown to stain teeth- even white and green teas.

Are tooth stains reversible? 

Pursue one of three primary methods for removing surface stains: 

  1. Ask your dentist about in-office treatment. The condition of your teeth, as well as the cause of the stains, will help him determine your best options. But, by and large, the best way to brighten teeth is with a take-home kit you get at the dentist or in-office bleaching. No matter the process you select, teeth whitening is not permanent. So, prepare to repeat your preferred process for the rest of your life. 
  2. If you opt for an Over-The-Counter method, be prepared to spend a lot of money in the process. Although the upfront costs of OTC methods may be less, you’ll have to do a lot of trial and error to stumble upon the method that works best for you. And many people complain about tooth sensitivity with certain methods such as a whitening pen, or gel. 

About Dr. Fred Wong of Blue Ocean Dentistry in Glendora, California

Dr. Fred Wong and the staff at Blue Ocean Dentistry use the latest available dental treatments, equipment, and materials – all of which make a marked difference in our patients’ experiences. We are committed to helping our patients achieve optimal dental health. We creatively combine dental science and artistry — which can literally redesign your smile. Since even a subtle change in your smile will help you to project self-confidence and high self-esteem, we love helping you feel good about yourself. We deliver the finest dental care at the most reasonable cost and accept most dental insurance plans as well as CareCredit. For more about the dental treatment plans we offer or to schedule an appointment, call today (626) 852-6999.