The worst thing about darkening teeth is that the process is gradual, making it difficult to notice. When you do notice it, you think your eyes are playing tricks on you. An important note, though: if it seems to you like your teeth are getting darker, they probably are. One of the following may be responsible:
- Enamel Erosion
The enamel is the protective layer of the teeth. If tooth enamel wears off, it reveals the dentin layer which is yellow (or as dark as light brown) in color. The more your enamel gets eroded, the more of the dentin is exposed, and the darker your teeth become.
- Poor Food Choices
Red wines, coffee, and other colored foods stain the teeth when consumed. If these stains are not cleaned off quickly, they sink deeper into the teeth, causing discoloration. Additionally, soda, fizzy drinks, and alcohol contribute to enamel erosion, leading to darker teeth.
Cigarettes contain tar, and if you smoke constantly, it will darken your teeth within a short time. Smoking also contributes to gum disease, tooth decay, and in extreme cases, oral cancer.
- Teeth Grinding
If you grind your teeth frequently, perhaps when you’re nervous, you are destroying your enamel. Damaged enamel means yellow teeth.
- Certain Drugs
Cancer patients undergoing treatment may get darkened teeth because of the strong chemicals in their medications. Some over-the-counter drugs (certain antibiotics and antihistamines) also cause discoloration.
Using a whitening toothpaste to bleach your teeth at home is not the best solution; learn more about whitening toothpaste here. You need to see a dentist immediately.
If you live in Texas, visit Mission Bend Family Dentistry in Richmond for all your dental restorations. Call 832-895-5110 now to make an appointment.