Yellow or Stained Teeth
Considering the fact that teeth whitening is a multi-billion dollar industry, it is safe to assume that no one wants stained and yellow teeth. The gradual discoloration of teeth is a fact of life for many. That does not mean you just have to live with it, though.
Causes of Stained and Yellow Teeth
The darkening of teeth has two general causes. One is external, and the other is internal. Both tend to occur naturally over time, so that older populations have generally stained and yellow teeth.
The surface of tooth enamel should be glassy and smooth so that it resists the collection of darkly colored buildup. However, with the normal wear and tear of our diets, the enamel becomes rougher and more porous, which allows more stain to collect.
The amount of stain that develops depends on the particular diet. Those who drink large amounts of dark beverages, like coffee, tea and red wine, or use tobacco products will build up more stains that are external. A very acidic diet will contribute to this effect because the acids cause the enamel to be rough and thinner.
Regardless of what you expose your teeth to on the outside, they will also become yellower over time due to a change inside the teeth. Enamel is naturally white in color, and its underlying core structure dentin is more yellow. As we age, the enamel gets thinner, and the dentin grows thicker. This causes a change in the appearance of the tooth as more of the yellow dentin shows through the enamel.
Ways to Treat Stained and Yellow Teeth
For external staining, many people achieve noticeable results by using an ADA-approved whitening toothpaste with an electric toothbrush. The mild abrasiveness of the toothpaste can effectively polish away dark stains from the exterior of the teeth with the extra help of the electric toothbrush’s vibrations. The same can be expected of a professional teeth cleaning, when your dental hygienist polishes the enamel surface after removing all of the bacterial buildup. This is also a great technique for maintaining a whitened smile.
To address generalized yellowing, the use of professional teeth whitening methods produces wonderful results. Whether you opt for custom-fitted trays to apply professional strength whitening gel or the in-office dental procedure, you can expect to achieve a color change of at least four to five shades.
Unfortunately, there are some discolorations of the teeth that do not respond to whitening treatments. These darkly stained teeth are usually the result of problems that occurred while the teeth were forming (as early as in utero). The good news is that we can effectively whiten even these teeth by covering them with natural, white porcelain veneers.
We can help with stained teeth
Our dental practices specialize in making smiles look great. If you are struggling with yellowing or stained teeth, schedule an appointment at the Premier Dental office near you, and we will provide an exam and a care plan to get you on a path to whiter teeth.