Did you know that cosmetic teeth whitening has become a 3.2 Billion dollar business in America?
That stat shows that Americans care about the appearance of their teeth and want them to be as white as possible. But what causes dental staining? Why would regularly drinking coffee or wine have such a permanent effect on your smile? Most importantly, what are the best ways to return your smile to it’s brightest and whitest look? Explore these issues that surround the problem of dental staining and learn about some solutions that can whiten your teeth.
Everyone has the same image in mind for a perfect smile: Well-aligned and very white, giving a clean, fresh appearance. But when even one tooth becomes discolored, it can throw off your entire smile. To truly understand how dental staining works, it’s important to know that these stains can be intrinsic or extrinsic in nature.
Unfortunately for some people, their teeth lose their bright color due to genetics and other reasons, and the beverages we consume can play a role as well. The first step of getting to the root of your staining problem is to figure out whether the cause is internal or external.
Intrinsic staining implies that the cause of staining has nothing to do with your choice of beverages, but rather, it comes from the inside of your tooth. When the inner parts of your tooth become discolored, even a perfectly white outer layer can rarely hide this form of staining. The most common causes of intrinsic dental staining are certain drugs, materials that are used for fillings, and injuries that have affected the tooth.
Extrinsic staining is the more prevalent form of staining where people’s choices and habits cause their teeth to darken, often turning them yellow or brown. The main culprits in extrinsic staining include coffee, tea, wine, and tobacco use, which is horrible for oral health in general. Oftentimes, changing up your habit or countering the effect with whitening treatments can mitigate the problem of extrinsic staining.
The causes of dental staining are widely varied and include everything from aging to consuming wine. Here are a few of the lesser-known causes of staining in your teeth:
The general process of aging takes a major toll on your teeth as it does on the rest of your body. As the living internal parts of your teeth age as well, they may begin to lose their white color, prompting the need for whitening treatments.
Poor Oral Care
Ever miss a brushing session? While one forgetful night won’t cause staining, a habit of dental neglect can wreak havoc on your smile. In addition to developing tooth decay and dental diseases, dental stains may permanently impact your appearance until treated.
Prescribed medications such as tetracycline have been shown to cause dental staining in adults who use them. As proven by the Colorado Brown Stain incident that led to fluoridation in the water, excess fluoride can also cause brown stains on the teeth of children.
Luckily for those with stained teeth, there are numerous options for treatment. From products that are available in every neighborhood drug store, to professional whitening treatments such as Zoom!, there are a variety of options for every type of person.
In addition to toothpaste brands, mouthwashes, and strips that provide a whitening effect, there are various less-conventional products that will also effectively whiten your teeth. Check out these examples to see if any of them work for you.
Resembling a series of loaded syringes, Lumibrite Teeth Whitening Gel is designed to whiten your teeth by up to nine shades in just two weeks.
Using tubes of gel that are designed to snap open and apply to your teeth, Go Smile Super White Snap Packs are highly portable and effective for treating minor stains.
While there are hundreds of available products that claim to whiten your teeth, none are as effective as the treatments used by professional dentists like Dr. Grubb. From potent in-office treatments that can whiten your teeth by many shades in a single visit to take-home trays that use effective gels and allow you to use them on your own time, there really is no substitute for a professional whitening treatment with your dentist.
It doesn’t take a lot of staining to make an impact on your smile, but fortunately, there are effective solutions for those who need them. Whether you opt for one of the hundreds of home products that claim varying degrees of whitening power, or you visit your dentist for a powerful treatment that will last, every type of person can find a treatment that works well for their smile. Ready to learn more? Contact Dr. Grubb today to see if you qualify for a whitening treatment at Family Implant & Reconstructive Dentistry.