Why Do You Have Stained Or Discoloured Teeth?
Stain on teeth can be grouped into 2 main types according to how stain occurred. External and internal stain
External stain occurs as a layer of staining agent is coated on the surface of the tooth or fillings. These stains can be easily removed with scaling and polishing procedure.
Causes of external stains include food and drinks like coffee, tea and fruit juices. Smoking and related tobacco use also causes the nicotine stain to cover the teeth.
These external stains are the easiest to be removed by routine scaling and polishing.
Old fillings also do get stained too. Poor oral hygiene is a common cause as the bacterial plaque that accumulate on the tooth surfaces, fillings or dentures become stained with intake of food and drinks.
Another form of black stain on children teeth is caused by the chromogenic bacteria, which is harmless but produces black stain on baby teeth.
Internal stain occurs when the staining agent penetrate deep into the structure of the tooth. These stains are more difficult to treat and cannot be removed by routine scaling and polishing. Causes of internal stains include natural ageing as the teeth darken with thickening of the dentine layer.
Excessive fluoride in the diet during tooth formation period in childhood can cause patches of whitish spots (mottled enamel) on the enamel, which is the outer layer of the teeth.
Usage of tetracycline antibiotic during childhood or mother’s pregnancy also can cause brownish stains of varied intensity to the inner layer of the teeth (dentin).
Bleeding inside the tooth or dead tooth after traumatic injury and discoloration due to filling materials like the silver amalgam. Tooth decay also create blackish stain to dark brown stain too.
Arrested tooth decay also causes stain as these chemical changes in the tooth structure leave behind colour changes like scar of tooth injury.
Some rare systemic and genetic problems can affect the colour and structure of teeth too.
Why Should You Fix Your Stained or Discoloured Teeth?
While stained or discoloured teeth generally will not affect your oral or general health, they are unsightly and draw unnecessary attention once you open your mouth.
Such stares may affect one’s self-image and confidence. Having a low self-image and esteem will have tremendous impact on all aspect of your life including personal, social and career.
Our dentist will do the proper diagnosis of the causes of your stained teeth before recommending the correct treatment for you.
What Can I Do to Whiten My Teeth?
Treatment options of stained teeth depends on the cause of discoloration and these may include:
- Improving oral hygiene brushing and flossing
- Avoiding or cutting down on certain tooth staining foods, drinks and habits like coffee, tea, smoking etc
- Tooth Whitening procedures : Chair-side whitening that is done in the clinic or take-home kit that you can do it on yourself during your free time or sleeping time.
- Scaling and polishing
- Fillings and crowns
Find out from our dentist what is the source of staining, internal or external, of your dental condition and we will recommend you the correct procedure to treat your discoloured teeth.
This bleaching substance is applied either on the outer surface of the teeth or internally within a tooth had root-canal treatment done.