Seven Common Causes of Tooth Discoloration
By Kellyn Hodges on March 09, 2019
Tooth discoloration can make even healthy smiles appear lackluster. Fortunately, professional teeth whitening and other cosmetic dentistry treatments can eliminate stains and brighten your teeth.
Here, our team at Kellyn Hodges Orthodontics in Philadelphia, PA explores seven common causes of tooth discoloration and explains how our team can help patients achieve and maintain a whiter, brighter, healthier-looking smile.
#1: Certain Foods and Beverages
The standard American diet consists of many staining agents. Foods and beverages such as tea, coffee, soy sauce, berries, red wine, and pasta sauce can stain teeth over time, especially if they are consumed frequently.
We recommend consuming dark-colored foods and beverage in moderation, and visiting the dentist for regular cleanings. If you must drink coffee or tea every day, try sipping it through a straw. This can minimize the effects of staining.
#2: Tobacco Products
The dangers of tobacco are well-documented. In addition to causing a host of health-related issues, smoking can also discolor the teeth due to tar and nicotine.
Teeth whitening can reduce tobacco stains on the teeth. In fact, many of our patients have enjoyed dramatic results after undergoing the procedure.
However, for the sake of your oral and overall health, we recommend kicking the habit for good. If you would like tips for stopping smoking, reach out to your physician.
#3: Poor Oral Hygiene
Inadequate oral hygiene can lead to dental discoloration. When plaque deposits accumulate on the teeth and along the gum line, stains adhere to the teeth more readily. More importantly, lack of proper hygiene can lead to more serious dental issues such as decay and periodontal disease.
#4: Certain Medications
There are certain drugs that can cause dental discoloration. This includes tetracycline, antihistamines, antipsychotic drugs, and medication for hypertension.
This type of discoloration is intrinsic, meaning it is deep within the tooth structure. As a result, these stains may not respond to teeth whitening. In these cases, dental bonding or porcelain veneers may be recommended.
Dental enamel can wear thin as we age. As a result, the natural yellow color of dentin is exposed. If you have noticed age-related dental discoloration, Dr. Hodges can help you find a treatment plan that will deliver the desired results.
Unfortunately, genetics play a role in the discoloration of teeth. Some people have thicker enamel or brighter teeth, and some do not, due to certain hereditary factors.
Injury or trauma to the teeth may cause tooth discoloration. This is due to the dentin coming into contact with blood. Think of it like a bruise; once an injury is sustained, the tooth bleeds internally. As a result, the entire tooth can eventually darken.
In most cases, this type of discoloration must be treated with dental bonding or porcelain veneers.
Contact Kellyn Hodges Orthodontics to Learn More
Our team is committed to providing high-quality dental care to individuals and families in our community. To learn more about tooth discoloration, or any of the services we offer at our practice, schedule an appointment. You can call us at (215) 245-5100 or (215) 883-0611 or contact us online.