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Reasons and Remedies for Tooth Discoloration

Are you afraid to show off your pearly whites because they aren’t so white anymore due to staining or discoloration? Find out how you can make your smile whiter and get back to proudly showing off your gorgeous teeth to the world. It’s not as far-fetched an idea as you may think.

Common Causes of Discolored Teeth

You may be wondering what exactly causes discolored teeth. Tooth injuries, certain medications and aging are a few of the reasons why teeth become discolored. How does aging contribute to discoloration? As you grow older, the protective layer of enamel that covers your teeth wears down and causes the darker layer of dentin that lies beneath to become visible. Other things that lead to stained or discolored teeth include food and beverage consumption and whether or not you utilize tobacco products.

The Food You Eat May Be the Culprit

While you may enjoy the foods listed below, you should know that they commonly lead to staining and discoloration issues. Don’t let these foods sabotage your beautiful smile:

  • Sugary Beverages – The sugars and acids contained within beverages like sports drinks, fruit juices, and sodas destroy tooth enamel and make your teeth look darker than they should be.
  • Dark Drinks – The acids that are contained within tea, coffee and red wine attack tooth enamel. The dark color of these drinks also stains the teeth.
  • Sweet Snacks – While candies, gums and other sweets are popular snack choices, the sugars within them will remove the enamel from your teeth.
  • Starch-Stuffed Foods – Pastas, potatoes, rice, white breads, and cereals are all popular food items. However, starches contain lots of sugars that wear away enamel, so be sure to brush your teeth after eating these foods.

Foods You Can Eat That Prevent Stained Teeth

If you want to keep your pearly whites as white as possible, be sure that you’re eating a balanced, nutrient-rich diet. The foods below are excellent choices when it comes to preventing staining:

  • Water – Water washes sugars, acids, and food particles from the inside of your mouth. This helps prevent the enamel from eroding and tooth discoloration from occurring.
  • Sugar-Free Drinks – These beverages will also rinse particles and substances from the mouth.
  • Milk and Cheese – Not only do these neutralize acids by increasing saliva production, but the protein and calcium contained within make your teeth healthy and strong.
  • Fish and Flax Seeds – These items are full of omega-3 fatty acids, which are the strongest kinds of anti-inflammatory nutrients. Anything you eat that reduces inflammation will offer added protection against gum disease.
  • Cocoa – Cocoa is able to reduce inflammation. It also provides protection from enamel erosion and tooth decay.

Can Smoking Cause Your Teeth to Stain?

Tooth staining caused by smoking is an incredibly common concern amongst smokers. If you’d like to know what you can do to eliminate this type of staining, continue reading.

Learn More About the Connection Between Cigarettes and Stained Teeth

Tobacco usage is one of the primary contributing factors towards stained and discolored teeth. Of course, the best way to avoid this problem is to not smoke or use other types of tobacco products. Tobacco in all of its forms is dangerous to physical health. It also places you at risk for periodontal disease and various forms of cancer.

Tips to Fix Your Discolored Teeth Caused by Smoking

Halting the habit of smoking is incredibly difficult. If you’re not ready to quit yet, here are some things that you can do to lessen the impact smoking has on your pearly whites:

  • Visit the dentist for professional cleanings twice a year.
  • Follow up your brushing and flossing routine with an antibacterial mouth rinse every day.
  • Brush your teeth after eating and using tobacco.
  • Keep your diet balanced and healthy.

Whitening Your Smile Isn’t Just a Fantasy

Many smokers believe that a white smile is something that will just never happen for them. While this may have been true in the past, today’s whitening treatment options can rid the teeth of even the most persistent stains. Speak to your dentist about whether one of the below treatment options is a good choice for you:

  • Whitening toothpastes that you purchase over the counter. These assist with some minor stains and can also prevent stains.
  • Whitening treatments that you conduct at home. These help with minor stains yet can cause tooth sensitivity.
  • Professional whitening treatments done in your dentist’s office. These work with most levels of staining. They are also the fastest and the most effective option available to you.

Pointers to Prevent Stained Teeth

No matter who you are, you can take steps to prevent stained teeth from becoming an embarrassing issue in your life. The below dental tips can keep discoloration from ruining your smile:

  • Brush and floss every day. You should follow up with an antibacterial mouth rinse.
  • Brush your teeth after you consume any type of food.
  • Use water to rinse out the mouth whenever you consume a dark-colored drink.
  • Receive dental treatments whenever they are necessary instead of waiting.
  • Have your teeth cleaned twice a year by a dental health professional.

Treatments to Tackle Tooth Discoloration

Advancements in tooth whitening treatments mean that just about everyone can address their stained and discolored teeth. There are a variety of treatment methods available for you to choose from. Here are the most common ones:

  • Professional treatments performed at the dentist’s office. These are the best, fastest, and most effective treatments available.
  • At-home professional treatments from your dentist. These eliminate most kinds of stains but take a little longer for you to achieve your desired results.
  • Over-the-counter products can whiten light stains, but they aren’t as strong as professional options.
  • Tooth whitening toothpastes may help for light stains.
  • If you have teeth that can’t be treated by whitening products, you can always have your dentist place dental crowns or veneers over your teeth to hide the signs of discoloration.

Speak with a dentist to find out which option is most suitable for you and your teeth whitening needs.

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