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Reasons and Remedies for Tooth Discoloration

Have you been suffering from a lack of self-confidence due to stained or discolored teeth? If so, then you’re not alone. This common problem causes many people to hide their smiles from the world. Learn what you can to do whiten your teeth and bring your confidence back.

How Teeth Become Stained

There are many different causes of stained teeth. Some are naturally occurring, while others are within your control. Aging is one cause of discolored teeth. As we age, the enamel of our teeth begins to wear away, exposing the layer of dentin that lays underneath. Dentin is darker than enamel, causing the teeth to appear darker. Certain medications and trauma to a permanent tooth are other causes of tooth discoloration. Some outside factors that can lead to staining include the foods and drinks you consume and tobacco usage.

How the Food and Beverages You Consume Cause Stained Teeth

Did you know that certain foods and drinks can cause your teeth to become discolored or stained? The following foods can sabotage the appearance of your smile:

  • Sugary Beverages – Any drink that is full of sugars and acids can wear away the enamel on your teeth, leading the teeth to appear darker in color. Examples of these types of drinks include sports drinks, fruit juices, and sodas.
  • Dark Drinks – Coffee, tea, and red wine can lead to stained teeth with sustained exposure over time. They also contain acids that destroy the tooth’s enamel.
  • Sweet Snacks – Just about everyone loves candy, gum, and other types of sweets. However, the sugars within these types of snacks will attack your teeth and erode away at the enamel without hesitation!
  • Starch-Stuffed Foods – White breads, potatoes, rice, pastas, and cereals all contain sugars that break down the enamel of your teeth.

How the Foods You Eat Can Fight Stained Teeth

While there are certain foods that you should avoid to prevent staining your teeth, there are also foods that you can eat to help prevent discolored teeth. Eating a diet that is balanced and that includes a range of nutrients is one of the simplest ways to avoid tooth staining and discoloration. Eat or drink these items to keep your smile as white as possible:

  • Water – While it may seem simple, water is one of the best ways to prevent tooth staining. That’s because it rinses sugars, acids and food particles from the mouth. This helps to keep bacteria levels down and makes your teeth less likely to become discolored or stained.
  • Sugar-Free Drinks – Sugar-free beverages will also rinse away substances from your mouth without the harmful impacts of sugar-full items.
  • Milk and Cheese – Dairy increases your saliva flow, which leads to a neutralization of the acids within your mouth. In addition to that, the calcium and protein within dairy foods make the teeth stronger.
  • Fish and Flax Seeds – Both of these choices are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are nutrients that are strong anti-inflammatories. Any type of food that lessens inflammation assists in the prevention of gum disease.
  • Cocoa – This choice is also one that reduces inflammation. Additionally, it can help to protect you from decay and erosion of the teeth.

Has Smoking Discolored Your Teeth?

Just about every smoker has teeth that are stained or discolored due to smoking. Educate yourself about how you can rid yourself of this common dental issue.

Pack Up the Truth About Cigarettes and Tooth Discoloration

The use of tobacco is one of the primary causes of stained teeth. This means that one of the best ways you can keep your smile white is to stop smoking. In addition to being bad for you in general, tobacco also increases the risk of periodontal disease, oral cancer, and discolored teeth, none of which are fun or cheap to deal with.

Ways to Puff Out the Problem of Stained Teeth from Smoking

If you aren’t ready to quit smoking just yet, there are still things that you can do to help reduce staining. Here are some tips on how to lessen the impact of stains caused by smoking:

  • See your dentist to have your teeth cleaned at least two times a year.
  • Prevent plaque and stains from setting in by brushing, flossing and rinsing your mouth with mouth wash every day.
  • Take time to brush your teeth after every meal and after smoking cigarettes.
  • Stick to a healthy, balanced diet.

Whitening Your Smile Is Possible

Most smokers believe that their stained and discolored tooth are a side effect that can’t be avoided. Today, there are a number of treatment options to whiten your teeth. They work for just about every level of staining. If you decide to have your teeth whitened, you should be aware that the staining will return if you continue to smoke. Have a conversation with your dentist about the whitening choices outlined below if you are ready for a tooth color change:

  • Over-the-counter whitening toothpastes can improve and prevent staining.
  • At-home tooth whitening treatments help with minor stains.
  • Professional tooth whitening treatments at the dentist’s office produce the quickest and whitest results.

Tips to Prevent Stained Teeth

There are a few precautions that you can take in order to avoid the embarrassment caused by stained or discolored teeth. These dental tips can help you prevent stains from becoming a major problem:

  • Brush, floss and rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash every single day.
  • Brush your teeth whenever you eat something.
  • Rinse out your mouth with water when you drink something dark-colored.
  • Schedule and get necessary dental procedures as soon as possible.
  • Have your teeth professionally cleaned regularly.

Tactics to Treat Discoloration of the Teeth

Don’t continue hiding your smile because of discolored teeth. There are a multitude of whitening options for you choose to from. The most common ones are:

  • Having your teeth whitened professionally at your dentist’s office, which offers you the most dramatic and quickest results.
  • Using an at-home whitening kit from your dentist, which can work for just about any level of staining.
  • Purchasing an over-the-counter whitening product to use at home, which are weaker than professional treatments.
  • Utilizing a tooth whitening toothpaste to get rid of lighter stains.
  • Having your dentist place dental crowns or veneers to cover any stains or discoloration that are resistant to treatment.

Speak with your dentist about which option is the best for you.

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