Staining on your teeth can reveal your age or make you look older than you are. You may try to hide your teeth when you smile because you’re unhappy with how they appear. However, you don’t have to when you know how to get rid of stains on teeth.
Types of Teeth Stains
Three main types of staining exist, including age-related, intrinsic, and extrinsic staining.
Age-Related Teeth Staining
This form of teeth staining may arise because of the foods and drinks you consume as well as your enamel wearing down over time. During the aging process, the teeth’s enamel thins. This allows the yellow-colored dentin underneath to show through.
Intrinsic Teeth Stain
With intrinsic teeth staining, the dentin underneath the teeth’s enamel begins to darken. These stains are much harder to remove since they’re from the structure of your tooth rather than superficial enamel staining.
Extrinsic Teeth Stains
This staining forms on the enamel of your teeth, and it’s from your lifestyle habits.
What Causes Teeth Stains?
Many factors can cause teeth stains, from the foods and drinks we consume to our oral hygiene habits. In addition, certain medications can also cause tooth discoloration. It’s essential to know what causes a tooth stain so you can proactively reduce further staining of your teeth.
If you are concerned about teeth stains, the best thing to do is talk to your dentist. They will be able to recommend the best course of action for you based on the severity of your stains.
Food and Drinks
Dark-colored drinks, including coffee, tea, and red wine, are known to cause tooth stains. Additionally, dark-colored foods will cause stained teeth, such as curry, cherry popsicles, and berries.
If you consume a high amount of acid, it wears down your teeth’s enamel, making them more vulnerable to stains.
Tobacco contains tar, which is the substance that forms a sticky layer on your lungs. It’s also why smoking causes your curtains and walls to turn yellow. Not to mention, it can cause brown or yellow teeth. Chewing tobacco also contains tar. Therefore, it may stain your teeth as well.
Certain medications, like antibiotics, may stain your teeth.
Doxycycline, for example, can cause staining in children’s teeth since the enamel of their teeth isn’t formed completely like an adult’s.
Some anti-hypertensive medications, such as angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and beta-blockers, may cause dry mouth. This ultimately increases your risk for teeth staining and decay since swallowing becomes more difficult and you have less saliva to wash away food particles.
Antihistamines may contribute to staining the inside of your teeth. These drugs cause a change in how the enamel and dentin reflect light, resulting in your teeth looking discolored.
Some antipsychotics will also cause teeth staining, such as olanzapine — a drug given to those with schizophrenia.
Too Much Fluoride
Too much fluoride when your permanent teeth were forming could have led to a condition known as fluorosis, which causes brown or white spots or streaks on your teeth.
Other possible factors include genetics, poor oral health, head or neck radiation, certain chemotherapy drugs, and aging.
How to Prevent Teeth Staining
When you’re discussing how to get rid of stains on teeth, you should know that prevention is the best remedy and the most effective one at that.
Watch What You Eat or Drink
Try to avoid dark-colored beverages and foods as much as possible, including foods that contain artificial dyes.
Limit the acidic drinks and foods you eat because they can wear down the enamel and make your teeth more prone to staining.
Drink Plenty of Water
Saliva is your mouth’s natural defense against bacteria, and it helps clean your mouth. You produce less of it when you’re dehydrated. Therefore, make sure you’re drinking adequate water per day. As a general rule, an adult should drink between one-half ounce to one ounce of water for every pound the individual weighs.
Brush and Floss Regularly
The American Dental Association recommends that you brush your teeth twice per day and floss once daily. This removes bacteria, plaque, and food particles remaining in your mouth that contribute to staining.
See Your Dentist for Semi-Annual Visits
Our dentist will use a more powerful toothbrush and a dental-grade cleaning agent to thoroughly clean your teeth and remove surface stains.
Avoid Tobacco Products
Since tobacco products cause negative health effects and may stain your teeth, avoid using them.
How to Get Rid of Stains on Teeth
Besides changing your habits to prevent the stains from worsening, you may also take steps to get rid of any current staining.
Baking Soda Paste
Mix baking soda and water to form a paste. Then, use this mixture to brush your teeth. For one, baking soda is a natural bleaching agent. The grittiness of baking soda can assist in cleaning your teeth as well.
Hydrogen Peroxide Rinse
Hydrogen peroxide is a bleaching agent. It can reduce the appearance of surface stains because it breaks down the stain’s color pigment, which makes them less noticeable. Keep in mind that liquid hydrogen peroxide doesn’t work as well as the hydrogen peroxide used by dentists.
Oil pulling isn’t a substitution for brushing and flossing and may not whiten your teeth as adequately as the aforementioned options. However, when you swish a tablespoon of coconut, sesame seed, or olive oil for 15 to 20 minutes daily, it’s been known to clean your teeth and help remove bacteria.
Professional Teeth Whitening Treatment May Be The Answer
Many people are unhappy with the appearance of their teeth, and they may feel self-conscious about smiling. While there are a number of over-the-counter teeth whitening products available, the best way to achieve long-lasting results is to visit a dentist for a professional teeth whitening treatment.
Professional teeth whitening is one of the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedures because it’s safe, effective, and affordable. The first step is to schedule a consultation with your dentist. During the consultation, your dentist will assess the severity of your staining and recommend the best treatment option. In most cases, professional whitening can be done in just one or two office visits. And because the procedure is performed by a trained professional, you can be sure that your teeth will be protected from damage.
If you’ve tried at-home remedies and you’re still not happy with the appearance of your teeth, professional teeth whitening may be the answer. If you are in the Atlanta, GA area, consider visiting our dentist for a more effective solution.
Schedule an appointment to discuss your options on how to get rid of stains on teeth by calling Peach Valley Dental at 404-254-5196.
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