Tooth discoloration or tooth staining is one of the most common dental problems among children as well as adults. A tooth is said to be discolored when it has abnormal color, hue, or translucency. However, there are ways you can prevent tooth discoloration.
Read this blog to learn more about tooth discoloration, different types of tooth stains, and their treatment options.
Tooth discoloration happens when your tooth gets dark and stained due to certain foods and drinks, poor dental hygiene, injury, or because of certain changes inside the tooth.
There are three types of tooth stains.
Extrinsic Tooth Stains
Extrinsic tooth stains occur above the surface of the tooth. It happens when pigmented residues from the food and drink you consume, build up a protein layer that covers the tooth enamel. Using tobacco is one of the main reasons for developing extrinsic tooth stains. Apart from that, having beverages like coffee, tea, and cola can also cause this type of tooth discoloration.
Intrinsic Tooth Stains
Intrinsic tooth stains occur below the surface of the tooth. This happens when stain-causing particles go deeper and accumulate at the tooth enamel. Excessive fluoride use is generally the leading cause of such tooth discoloration. Compared to extrinsic tooth discoloration, intrinsic tooth discoloration is difficult to remove.
Age-Related Tooth Stains
The enamel layer of our teeth wears off as we age. This exposes the core tissue of the teeth called dentin. Dentin also becomes yellow as we get older. Both intrinsic and extrinsic tooth discoloration can contribute to this process.
Tooth discoloration can happen due to various reasons such as bad food choices, poor oral hygiene, tobacco use, certain diseases, and medicines. Other factors that can cause tooth discoloration are aging, genetics, teeth injuries, and overuse of fluoride in dental products.
Treatment options for tooth discoloration vary depending on its cause. Some of the effective treatment options are listed below.
If you have a discolored tooth, contact our dentist in Des Moines who can diagnose the type of tooth discoloration you have and provide an effective solution.