How Do Teeth Become Discoloured?

Discoloured Teeth vs White Teeth

When teeth become discoloured, it means that they become darker in shade, or stubborn stains have appeared that are hard to remove with a soft-bristle brush. Discolouration comes naturally with ageing, however, it can damage confidence in your smile. You become self-conscious about smiling and it can be difficult to accept.

Whilst there are many cosmetic treatments available to restore your confidence such as teeth whitening, dental implants, dental veneers and bonding at Pennant Hills, you’d rather your teeth shine naturally. If you’re an implant patient and are wondering if you can whiten your implants, you can click here to find out.

There are also many home remedies you can adopt to lighten the shade of your teeth if you don’t want cosmetic treatments. Before we go into that, let’s take a look at how teeth become discoloured.

Your teeth become discoloured by surface stains or the material of the tooth. There are three categories of discolouration. Below breaks them down into more detail.

Discoloured Teeth vs White Teeth

Extrinsic Discolouration

This is the outer layer of the tooth, known as the enamel, that can become stained by dark food and drink. Food and drink such as coffee, tea, soft drinks, dark meat, berries, fruits and sauces. Poor dental hygiene is also a key factor because stains will remain on teeth if you do not brush teeth.

Intrinsic Discolouration

This is the internal structure of the tooth, commonly known as the dentin which becomes dark and develops a yellow colour. This is usually caused by damaged teeth where stains have made their way into the inner structure of the tooth. Diseases can also impact and erode the enamel. Too much fluoride exposed to your teeth is also a key reason.

Ageing Discolouration

The shade of teeth naturally degrades through ageing. This becomes enhanced by intrinsic and extrinsic factors. The underlying dentin will naturally become yellow over time and the enamel becomes thinner which allows the dentin to change. If your teeth are chipped or cracked, this may also increase discolouration.

Family Brushing teeth

How Can I Whiten Teeth At Home?

If you’re wondering what the best practices are to whiten teeth at home, there are many! We’ve picked out five remedies that have proven to work and that you can try.

  • Eat Calcium-Rich Foods – A healthy diet will ensure your enamel becomes stronger. Strong enamel keeps the stains well away from your teeth. Leafy green vegetables such as kale and spinach, cheese, dairy and nuts are great sources of calcium that will keep teeth white.
  • Oral Hygiene – Make sure that you regularly brush your teeth twice a day, and after a heavy meal if necessary. This will make a big difference to your teeth.
  • Drink More Water – Water contains traces of fluoride which fights cavities and strengthens your teeth, not to mention improves your smile.
  • Whitening Toothpaste – Whitening toothpaste containing peroxide and mild abrasives help to polish the teeth and remove surface stains. Ensure you consult your dentist on the best whitening toothpaste for you.
  • Plant Ingredients – Plant-based ingredients such as activated charcoal, peppermint oil and apple cider vinegar can naturally whiten teeth and improve your oral health. They contain natural cleansing properties that reduce plaque and acid build-up, and naturally, brighten teeth. We will have further information on how plant-based ingredients improve oral health soon!

Are you considering whitening your teeth? Contact our helpful Pennant Hills dentists today and book an appointment. Alternatively, follow our blog page for everything you need to know about teeth whitening.