Discoloration of tooth or tooth stains is quite a common problem, and it badly influences overall personality and appearance. Moreover, it indicates bad personal hygiene and lacking self-care. The good news is that most tooth stains and discoloration are treatable and can be prevented.

Types Of Tooth Discoloration

It is important to know the causes behind tooth discoloration in order to prevent it and get rid of it completely. There are different types of tooth stains, but they can be categorized into three main types, i.e., intrinsic, extrinsic, and age-related stains.

1.     Intrinsic

Often grey in appearance, intrinsic stains are within the tooth. It appears to be more resistant to whitening products and therapies. These stains could occur due to certain medications, tooth decay, and even tooth trauma or injury

2.     Extrinsic

There is quite a variation in extrinsic stains; these could appear yellow, brown, and other teeth’ discoloration. Extrinsic stains usually affect tooth enamel, the outer surface of the tooth, and it is preventable. It could occur due to several reasons.

3.     Age-Related

Aging effects are inevitable, so are age-related tooth stains. The enamel of the tooth begins to wear away with age. It eroded tooth enamel; it is more likely to get stains. These stains could appear from both extrinsic and intrinsic causes.

Causes Of Tooth Discoloration

Mostly what we eat and drink affects tooth color. Some types of food are more likely to affect tooth enamel as compared to others, and with constant eating and drinking habits, stains on the tooth become evident and form tooth discoloration. Some common causes of tooth discoloration are

1.     Beverages

Certain types of beverages are responsible for tooth stains and discoloration. Most commonly, red wine, coffee, tea, cola, and even alcohol used in excess can give tough tooth stains. Alcohol consumption is the second most leading cause of mouth cancer. Other than that, excessive consumption affects teeth and leads to discoloration.

It is important to limit the intake of such beverages. Alcohol and wine should be taken in moderate quantities. Many health centers are working to help those dealing with alcohol abuse. One such rehab is Sunrise House Treatment Center that may also help out in this regard.

2.     Tobacco

Tobacco is another culprit of tooth stains. Research suggests that smokers are more likely to get tooth stains and discoloration as compared to non-smokers. Research says that the mouth’s acidic environment is unhealthy for the tooth enamel and makes it more prone to discoloration.

3.     Injuries

Tooth discoloration may also occur following an injury or trauma. This occurs because of pulp necrosis which occurs weeks and months after the injury. This occurs because of the release of pigments when tissues of the pulp

4.     Antibiotics

Studies show that the use of certain antibiotics such as tetracycline can lead to discoloration of the tooth. The discoloration may vary from grey to brown and even yellow. This happens because tetracycline binds with the calcium ions of the tooth and causes discoloration.  

5.     Aging

Darkening of the tooth is the natural outcome of aging. With age, the tooth’s hard outer covering wears away and exposes the dark dentin beneath it. As enamel wears out, the tooth tends to appear more yellow or grey in color. With age, the pores present on enamel get larger and thus make them more vulnerable to tooth discoloration and stains.

How To Deal With It

Tooth stains and discoloration of teeth are unpleasant, and it also makes a person look a decade older. It is thus very important to follow a healthy lifestyle routine along with healthy diets that can help to overcome it. The most important thing for managing and maintaining healthy teeth is to visit a dentist routinely.

A regular visit to a dentist, once every six months, is essential for the prevention of tooth problems. Early diagnosis proves helpful for many permanent tooth problems and tooth loss. Other than that, managing healthy oral hygiene is important. Making sure to brush and floss teeth can help to avoid tooth-related issues.

Take Away

Tooth discoloration and stains are experienced by many and are unpleasant too. The stains could either be intrinsic, extrinsic, or age-related.  Certain patterns of lifestyle in terms of eating and drinking habits strongly influence tooth color. It is important to manage routine visits to the dentist and maintain healthy oral hygiene to avoid such issues.