How to Avoid and Remove Tooth Stains
We can all picture the perfect smile. Perfect teeth, each a pearly white, just seem to light up a room and make the smile’s owner even more attractive. But when teeth don’t have that uniform glow to them, with an unpleasant tint from stains, they can appear unhealthy. It can suggest a range of bad habits. And for some, it can make them self-conscious enough to avoid smiling altogether.
If you aren’t in love with discoloration on your teeth, there is a wide range of options available to correct this. Since the stains can be brought on by a variety of habits and conditions, the first step is to understand what caused these stains to begin with.
What Causes Tooth Stains?
There are two ways your teeth can develop stains. The first, called extrinsic staining, is when discoloration happens on the surface of the teeth. This can be brought on by dietary choices, such as drinking tea or red wine, or anything containing a staining chemical called tannins. If you are or were a smoker, you could have developed stains from constant tobacco use. Also, it can be a side effect of some medications or even overuse of fluoride products.
The other type of staining is called intrinsic, or when it has developed inside the tooth enamel. Perhaps you were born with or developed jaundice, which can discolor teeth. Some antibiotics have been shown to produce this effect as well. Genetic disorders, tooth decay and compounds that used to be applied as part of tooth fillings can also lead to intrinsic staining.
Ways You Can Correct Stained Teeth in the Red Deer Area
If you’d like to brighten your smile, here are some methods that have shown significant results. The cause of the discoloration, and whether it’s extrinsic or intrinsic, plays a role in each method’s effectiveness. A recommendation from your dentist will provide you with options most appropriate for you.
Dietary and Habit Changes
If you’re constantly drinking sugary drinks that promote tooth decay or have staining chemicals, swap them out immediately for other options. When it comes to your teeth, plain water is a winner for many reasons, and it’s no different here. If you’re a smoker, this is yet another great reason to quit or explore a cessation program.
Over-the-Counter Whitening Options
Whitening strips, toothpastes with whitening agents and bleaching trays are all available wherever dental care products are sold. While these have shown to be effective, they’re not nearly as strong as what your dentist provides and may need to be applied periodically to maintain changes.
Your dentist can apply a thin porcelain veneer on the surface of discolored teeth, giving it a very natural look that blends in well with your other teeth. However, if those teeth begin to discolor over time, they may require whitening treatments or veneers to match the color properly.
For intrinsic stains, surface whitening won’t penetrate far enough to affect the teeth. Your dentist can place a bleaching agent in a tooth’s pulp chamber, allowing it to lighten the entire tooth from inside.
If you want whiter teeth, the smartest way to start is with a talk with a professional about appropriate options. Dentists have a wide range of options available to give you the smile you’re after, and they’ll be able to recommend the ones that would be most effective for you. If you’d like to get more information about tooth staining in Blackfalds or Rimbey, contact Alpen Dental today to schedule an appointment with one of our dentists.