Aside from wanting a brighter and whiter smile, people have their teeth whitened because of tooth discolouration.
Tooth discolouration is perfectly normal – even unavoidable! – but that doesn’t make it any more pleasant to see when you look in the mirror. To find out what’s causing your stained teeth, let's look at the common culprits behind tooth discolouration.
Types of Tooth Discolouration
Tooth discolouration can either be categorised as extrinsic or intrinsic.
Extrinsic discolouration (also known as superficial staining) happens when the surface of the tooth is stained. These stains can look like yellowed or darkened spots on the enamel (the outer layer) of the tooth.
Intrinsic teeth stains occur below the surface. This means the inner structure of the tooth (also known as the dentin) has been damaged, making the stain more difficult to remove. Intrinsic tooth discolouration is usually caused by issues occurring during tooth development, such as too much fluoride exposure in childhood.
Smilepro Worldwide has the best teeth whitening kit to remove discolouration, but what are some of the key causes behind it?
The Causes of Tooth Discolouration
There are many different factors behind tooth discolouration, some of which are extremely common. As many of these causes are lifestyle related, it’s important to be aware of them. Luckily, if the stains are extrinsic, they’re fairly easy to remove.
1. Food and Beverages
It’s no surprise food and drinks are one of the leading causes of stained teeth. And sadly, it doesn’t discriminate between the healthy stuff and the junk:
- Sugary foods: The high sugar content found in sweets and soft drinks feeds the bacteria in your mouth, while also releasing acids that cause tooth decay. This can lead to darkened spots and holes.
- Coffee, tea and wine: These drinks all contain acidic polyphenols called tannins, which can lead to staining. The change in colour of your teeth, even comes down to the type of tea you’re drinking; green tea can stain teeth grey, where black tea can cause yellow staining.
- Berries and Acidic Foods: Richly pigmented berries such as blueberries and blackberries can stain your teeth as easy as they can your clothes! And acidic and citrus foods such as pineapples or tomatoes can eat away at your tooth’s enamel.
Age-related stained teeth are usually caused by a mixture of both intrinsic and extrinsic factors. The enamel slowly wears thinner with age, causing the dentin to show through. The dentin also yellows or darkens during the aging process.
3. Oral Care
Poor oral hygiene such as not brushing and flossing consistently leads to a build-up of plaque and tartar. This can quickly cause tooth discolouration, as well as a number of other dental problems. As plaque is not normally visible on the surface of teeth, you might not even know it’s there.
Smoking or chewing tobacco will cause stained teeth. The tar and nicotine in tobacco absorbs through the teeth, leading to heavy brownish-yellow stains starting near the gum line.
5. Environmental Factors
Fluoride helps prevent tooth decay by strengthening the enamel and making teeth more resistant to acids. However, overexposure to fluoride – such as in water with high levels of fluoride – can also cause teeth to discolour.
Certain medications including antihistamines, antibiotics, drugs for high blood pressure and antipsychotic drugs can contain ingredients that will cause teeth to stain. Mouth washes and rinses containing chlorhexidine or cetylpyridinium chloride can also result in tooth discolouration.
Genetics play a big part in how well your teeth hold up against discolouration. There are several genetic disorders that can have an effect on the look and structure of teeth, while some people are just genetically blessed with brighter and thicker enamel to protect against teeth stains.
To rid your teeth of stains and achieve a brighter and whiter smile, try out SmilePro’s teeth whitening kit. Our specialised formula works to remove even the deepest of stains with guaranteed results.