Everybody wants to show off a bright smile, so if you’ve noticed stains starting to form on your teeth, it’s natural to want to get it seen to.
There are a number of factors that can lead to tooth discolouration, some of which are well-known — red wine, for example, is a common culprit. But did you know that there are a few foods and drinks that can cause the colour of your teeth to change? Read on to find out if some of your favourite snacks could be doing damage …
They may be packed with antioxidants and other healthy nutrients, but unfortunately, berries that are highly pigmented can cause your teeth to stain when eaten often. The worst culprits are those that are dark in colour — think blueberries, cherries, blackberries, as well as fruits like pomegranates. Think about the stains these little treats can leave on your fingers and clothes — the pigment can have a similar effect on the enamel of your teeth. Enjoy berries and dark fruits in moderation, and opt for paler options when it’s possible. White grapes, for example, are less likely to cause discolouration because they don’t contain the same level of pigmentation.
It may come as a surprise that citrus fruits could be causing your pearly whites some damage. The reason for this is that these kinds of fruits (oranges, grapefruit and lemons, for example) tend to be very acidic, which means that they can erode the enamel of your teeth. Over time, as your enamel wears away, the layer of dentin below can become exposed, revealing a shade of yellow underneath.
Tea and coffee
Sorry, caffeine-lovers! Coffee is one of the biggest causes of tooth discolouration because it contains tannins that often lead to stains. It’s also very acidic, which means that it can cause damage to your teeth over time. Black tea can cause similar problems, but the good news is that adding a bit of milk to your hot beverage can lessen the effects by lightening the colour of your drink. Opting for lighter teas, like green or white varieties, rather than black tea, can also be helpful.
Soda and sports drinks
Sports drinks often contain dark colourants, which can cause stains to form on your teeth, and because they are generally quite acidic, they can also erode your enamel. Rather try and stick to water when you exercise — not only is it better for your teeth, but it’s good for your overall health as well.
It’s no secret that soft drinks are not a healthy choice, but besides the sugar content, these drinks are also packed with acid and colourants that can cause serious discolouration. Try and avoid soda and sugary drinks as much as possible.
While it’s not necessary to avoid your favourite sauces altogether, it’s a good idea to use the darker ones in moderation. Soy sauce, for example, can cause stains, as can tomato-based pasta sauces, balsamic vinegar, and some curries. If you do indulge from time to time, just remember to rinse your mouth after eating to get rid of some of the pigment.
If you have noticed some stains and discolouration beginning to form on your teeth, do come in and see us. We offer teeth whitening treatments, which are a very effective way of restoring a bright, beautiful smile. We offer both at-home and in-office options, both of which have their own benefits.
To find out more about these treatments and how they work, have a look here.
To make an appointment, please get in touch with us.