Why Teeth Stain

Dentist Serving Calgary, Cochrane, Airdrie and Nearby Areas of Alberta

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Some reasons why teeth stain include:

  • Age
  • Certain Diseases
  • Certain Medications
  • Too much fluoride
  • Pigmented foods and drinks
  • Injury or trauma
  • Poor dental hygiene
  • Previous dental restorations
  • Tobacco use

Teeth can be stained at a shallow level or at deeper levels. The shallow level is most common and is treatable with a teeth whitening treatment, which will restore the original colour or at least approach it. Imagine a white carpet. Even with regular vacuuming, when it is cleaned with a carpet cleaning machine dirt comes out that you might not have noticed was accumulating over time.

This staining is caused by the pigmented foods and drinks we put in our mouths. There is also the yellow color that teeth can acquire as we age which is the yellow dentin layer showing through the thinning enamel.

Less frequent are the deeper levels of staining, which are caused by injury, disease, or some medications given in childhood. Tetracycline is often cited as a culprit. When it is given while the teeth are still developing, it lays deep stains, perhaps in stripes, which cannot be removed by a tooth whitening treatment. Sometimes a cosmetic dentist can treat it somehow, depending on the exact circumstances. Or you might want to have some porcelain veneers to give those teeth a new pearly-white front surface.