Food habits that can stain your teeth

A white, bright smile is on the wish list of almost everybody. If you’ve noticed your teeth have lost their lustre over the years and are not as white as they used to be, a number of factors could be at play.

Age-related changes and accidents in your younger years could affect the enamel development of teeth. Lifestyle habits such as drinking too much coffee, smoking, and poor oral hygiene levels, among others, could also lead to stained and discoloured teeth. 

Types of teeth stains

It’s important to note that teeth stains can either be extrinsic, intrinsic or age-related.

Extrinsic: Extrinsic tooth stain is staining on the surface of the tooth or tooth enamel. This type of staining is typically caused by tobacco use, regularly drinking coffee and tea, wine, or fizzy drinks.

Intrinsic: An intrinsic tooth stain is staining below the surface of the tooth, which renders it more resistant to whitening toothpaste and over-the-counter whitening products. Certain medications, injury or trauma, genetics, excessive fluoride use and tooth decay can lead to this invasive form of staining that can appear greyish in colour. Although difficult to remove, these stains can be tackled with a professional in-office whitening treatment.

Age-Related Teeth StainsAge-related teeth stains can be caused by both intrinsic and extrinsic tooth discolouration. As you age, the enamel on your teeth begins to wear out, which often results in a yellow appearance. These intrinsic causes of discolouration combined with extrinsic causes such as consumption of certain foods, beverages, and tobacco use, cause most adults’ teeth to discolour with age.

Teeth staining causes

As mentioned earlier, teeth stains can be caused due to a variety of reasons. Here’s a comprehensive list to help you understand the various possible causes of teeth discolouration, and help you prevent further discolouring of your teeth:

  • Food and drinks: Coffee, tea, dark sodas, red wine, and certain fruits and vegetables (apples and potatoes) can cause your teeth to discolour.
  • Tobacco: Both cigarettes and chewing tobacco can contribute to teeth staining.
  • Oral care: Poor dental hygiene, such as inadequate brushing, flossing, and failing to rinse the mouth after meals can lead to plaque build-up and accumulation of stain-producing substances.
  • Trauma or disease: Trauma to teeth in childhood can cause discolouration. In addition, certain diseases and their treatments that affect tooth enamel and dentin can cause discoloured teeth. Chemotherapy and radiation are some examples.
  • Medications. As per research, antibiotics such as tetracycline and doxycycline have a link with tooth discolouration. Antihistamines, high blood pressure medication, and antipsychotic drugs are also known causes of discoloured teeth.

How to get rid of stains?

There are several treatment options available to treat tooth discolouration. These include:

In-office whitening treatment

A dentist or dental hygienist will use professional whitening technology such as Zoom whitening or Flash whitening to give you a brighter appearance. In-office treatments are highly effective and last for months. At Go Dental Clinic, Dubai, expert dentists/dental hygienists provide you with painless and comfortable teeth whitening sessions using the most advanced technologies.

At-home treatments through your dentist

Your professional take-home whitening kit will include a set of custom moulded trays that snuggly fit your set of teeth. You will need to apply a tiny quantity of whitening gel into the tray, then wear the trays for up to an hour a day or as directed by your dentist. You may need to wear the trays for a few weeks to achieve desired results.

Over-the-counter products

Whitening toothpaste and whitening strips may be able to diminish surface stains but are much less effective on intrinsic stains when compared to in-office teeth whitening and customised at-home treatments.

When should you see a dentist?

It is recommended to see your dentist before opting for any form of whitening treatment. They will guide you about the treatment option best suited to your unique case. Some tooth discolouration is irreversible, in which case your dentist can present you with veneers, crowns, and white composite filling options.

It is recommended to visit your dentist twice a year for routine dental check-ups. It can help detect cavities, plaque build-up, and other problems, while also preventing issues from aggravating. 

 At Go Dental Clinic, we utilise modern techniques and customised treatment to give you long-lasting whiteness up to 8 shades lighter. Contact us at +971 4 397 9522 and book your appointment with our dental specialists.

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