7 Ways You Might Be Staining Your Teeth

7 Ways You Might Be Staining Your Teeth

Do you look in the mirror and sigh at the sight of a smile that’s lost a little of its luster? Do you feel like no matter how well you brush and floss at night that your smile just refuses to lighten up? If you’ve answered yes to these questions, don’t worry, your cosmetic dentist in Lakewood, CO may have some answers.

While most of us know that eating foods and drinks like tomatoes, berries, soy sauce, coffee, tea, and red wine can cause our smiles to dim, they’re not the only culprits behind tooth discoloration. So that you know which types of food to avoid when trying to brighten your smile, here are a few sneaky stainers that can change the color of your teeth.

Lemonade

While a cold glass of lemonade sounds extremely satisfying on a hot summer’s day, the combination of the drink’s high sugar content and acidity can really impact the complexion of your smile. Our mouths crave a balanced pH level. But the acidity in a glass of lemonade can alter that balance by making our mouths more acidic. As a result, lemonade can actually wear down and erode tooth enamel. When the white outer layers of our teeth are stripped away, it becomes easier to see the yellowish material that lies beneath.

Sports Drinks

While a bottle of Gatorade may not look as enamel staining as a cup of coffee or glass of wine, the liquid can still do a number on the color of your teeth. Sports drinks contain high levels of sugar, which harmful oral bacteria can use to produce substances that erode away tooth enamel, once again leaving the yellowish material underneath visible.

Consuming overly sugary beverages is especially problematic when dealing with dry mouth caused by dehydration. Considering sports drinks are designed to rehydrate, this only makes the beverages even a bigger threat to complexion of your teeth.

White Wine

While red wine certainly presents a bigger risk, white wine can also stain your teeth when combined with certain types of foods. Say you enjoy a glass or two of chardonnay before dinner, which consists of a hearty pasta with tomato sauce.

The acidity in white wine makes tooth enamel more susceptible to staining. So eating anything that stains, such as tomato sauce, berries, or soy sauce, immediately after drinking white wine is kind of like opening up the pores of your teeth for the stain to be sucked into.

Smoothies and Juices

While fresh juices and smoothies are great for your figure, they may not be so great for the color of your teeth, depending on what you put in them. As a general rule of thumb, anything that can stain your clothes can certainly stain the color of your teeth.

Considering that smoothies are usually packed with berries and bright vegetables that have teeth-staining qualities, you may need to take a slight precaution when enjoying your breakfast of champions. Instead of drinking your smoothie directly from the glass, try sipping the beverage through a straw.

Green Tea

Black and brown teas may seem like the most likely culprit to stain your teeth, but studies have actually found that green teas can also leave similar stains. The best way to avoid staining from tea? Brush your teeth within 30 minutes after drinking.

However, it’s important not to try brushing immediately after eating or drinking every type of enamel staining item. You can actually harm your teeth by brushing immediately after drinking or eating something that’s highly acidic. When the pH level of your mouth leans towards a higher acidity, tooth enamel is less resilient and can be easily damaged.

The Pool

Okay, stay with us on this one. While most of us keep our lips tightly clenched together when in the pool, many competitive and recreation swimmers have a habit of leaving their mouths open while doing laps. By letting the water run over your teeth, you allow the chemicals that treat the pool into your mouth as well. These chemicals have been shown to cause a brown stain to form on tooth enamel. So the next time you decide to do a few laps in the pool, consider keeping your mouth firmly shut.

Prescription Medications

A recent survey found that 55 percent of Americans now regularly take some kind of prescription medication. Unfortunately, many types of medications cause dry mouth as a side effect. The mouth requires a steady flow of saliva to prevent harmful oral bacteria from wearing down tooth enamel. The drier our mouths become, the higher our risk for dental decay and erosion.

If you experience frequent dry mouth and believe it might be as a result of a medication you take, talk with your cosmetic dentist in Lakewood, CO about possible treatment options that will help to rehydrate your mouth.

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