Keep your teeth white, despite the foods and liquids you consume.

Many of the foods and liquids we consume on a daily basis can stain our teeth and make them lose their bright whiteness. But there are ways to keep our teeth white despite those stains. Visit the team at Steven A. Lang, DDS, in Middletown, Ohio to discuss the best method for keeping your pearly whites bright.

Intrinsic Versus Extrinsic Stains

Certain foods have a knack for leaving stubborn stains on our teeth. Deeply pigmented foods like berries, tomato sauce, and dark beverages such as coffee, tea, and red wine can be culprits. Acidic treats like citrus fruits can also soften enamel, making it easier for stains to take hold. It’s wise to enjoy these in moderation and maintain good oral hygiene. And don’t worry, we’ll talk about this more later.

And, when it comes to your teeth’s looks, knowing about intrinsic and extrinsic stains is more than just using fancy words. It’s like having a superpower for choosing the right dental treatments. By understanding the differences between these two types of stains, you can take better care of your teeth and feel more confident about your smile’s sparkle.

Let’s dive in to learn what sets them apart and how this knowledge can help you shine.

  • Intrinsic tooth stains are those that happen inside the tooth, within the tooth’s enamel or dentin. Intrinsic tooth stains can happen because of genetic disorders or during tooth development. Fluorosis, or an excess of exposure to fluoride, is an intrinsic stain.
  • Extrinsic tooth stains are stains that happen on the enamel, or outer layer of the tooth, and are often caused by human behavior, like tobacco use and consumption of pigmented foods and drinks. Many dark-colored beverages, like coffee and red wine, contain tannins, which can cause tooth discoloration. Dark colored fruits can also cause extrinsic stains on teeth. Another factor of extrinsic tooth stains is poor dental habits. By not brushing your teeth properly, there is more of a chance for stains to happen on the surface of your teeth.

What foods cause my teeth to stain?

Any food or beverage containing tannins are major offenders of staining teeth, like coffee or red wine. Other drinks that can cause tooth staining are tea and cola beverages.

When it comes to foods that can cause stains on your teeth, avoid foods rich in dark sauces, like tomato based sauces or those heavy in soy. Curry-based sauces can also cause stains on teeth. Other foods to avoid are dark colored berries and fruits.

You can still enjoy these foods, but to help limit the stains they can create on your teeth, swallow the foods swiftly and drink lots of water to help move the stain-inducing ingredients away from your mouth. If you are drinking liquids that are high in tannins, use a straw; this will help keep the liquids away from your teeth and help lessen the chance of staining your teeth. And, of course, brush your teeth soon after you eat to help eliminate stains and bacteria buildup in your mouth.

Are there tooth whitening solutions to help keep my teeth white?

There are at-home, in-office, and over-the-counter tooth whitening options available, but we highly suggest you consult with the team at Steven A. Lang, DDS, before choosing a tooth whitening regimen.

Over-the-counter tooth whitening products are widely available at grocery stores and drug stores. These products come as strips you can place on your teeth, whitening polishes you paint on your teeth, and even bleaching solutions you place into trays, which you then put on your teeth to wear for a duration of time. All of these over-the-counter products claim they will whiten your teeth, but because no two teeth, or stains, are the same, if you are looking for long-term solutions, you should visit your dentist to discuss a tooth whitening treatment.

Steven A. Lang, DDS offers complimentary consultations and custom take-home whitening trays when you join the patient family.

Consult Dr. Steven A. Lang, DDS before you start a tooth whitening treatment.

If you are looking at choosing a tooth whitening treatment to help your pearly whites dazzle once again, visit the team at Steven A. Lang, DDS for a consultation. Our team will give you a dental evaluation and suggest the best tooth whitening treatment for you based on the health of your teeth and how white you want them to be. Not all teeth (or stains) are created equal, so call us today to schedule your appointment!