Common Causes of Tooth Stain

man with discolored teeth

If you’re considering whitening your teeth or wondering why your smile looks darker than it used to, understanding the causes of tooth stain is a great place to start. When you know what makes enamel darken, you can take proactive steps to help your teeth look their best.

 

Your Diet

Since teeth are porous, they naturally soak up the stain particles of foods and drinks we consume. Things like red wine, coffee, and tea are prime culprits for cumulative dental stain.

 

 Environmental Factors

Growing up in certain areas or having particular lifestyle habits can make your teeth appear a different colour. For example, some people who swim competitively on a regular basis notice that the pool chlorination can cause stains on their teeth after several months. Fortunately, regular scales and cleans can polish this superficial stain away. Other areas may have naturally heavy mineral content in the soil and water supply, causing teeth to develop in a manner where pits or stains are visible (requiring cosmetic treatment.)

 

 Medications

Women who are pregnant or nursing need to avoid certain medications, such as the antibiotic tetracycline. If consumed at a young age, it can cause permanent tooth discoloration in a child’s adult teeth.

 

 Genetics

Perhaps you just have naturally dark teeth…and that’s ok. It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with your smile. The layer of tooth structure under your enamel is naturally yellow. Sometimes it’s thicker and darker, with thinner enamel over it, allowing it to show through more.

 

When to See a Professional

At Wyndham Dental, we’ve helped brighten smiles for over 30 years. If your teeth are causing embarrassment or don’t appear as youthful as they used to, it may be time to talk to us about professional teeth whitening or dental veneers! Call today for a consultation.