Getting to know the types of stains and discoloration of teeth

Getting to know the types of stains and discoloration of teeth

We all want to have bright white teeth for a perfect smile, but teeth stain for a variety of reasons, including the food or drink you choose, your oral hygiene, and the medications you take. Staining of the teeth occurs on the surface of the teeth or under the enamel of the teeth, and in some people both types of stains occur.

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Types of teeth discoloration

Teeth discoloration can occur as a result of surface stains, due to actual changes in the material of your teeth, or due to a combination of different factors. Dental professionals divide dental stains into three categories:

External tooth stains: External tooth stain is a stain on the surface of the tooth. This happens when stain particles, such as colored residue from food and drinks, form a film of proteins on the teeth that cover the enamel. External teeth stains generally appear as a result of tobacco use or regular coffee and tea drinking. These types of tooth stains respond well to regular dental cleanings and brushing with whitening toothpaste.

Internal stains of the teeth: An internal stain of the teeth is a stain that occurs under the surface of the tooth. This happens when the particles that cause tooth staining work on the outer part of the tooth and accumulate in the tooth enamel. Excessive fluoride intake, especially in children, is associated with internal tooth stains. Removing stains from the inside of the teeth is more complicated, but it can be done. Removing internal stains may require bleaching using specialized whitening products or chemical home whitening products such as whitening strips.

Stains due to aging: Stains that are caused on the teeth as a result of aging, combine the results of internal and external changes in the color of the teeth. Because the core tissue of teeth, dentin, is naturally yellow, teeth will change color over time. As we age, the enamel that covers the surface of the tooth becomes thinner, allowing the dentin to be visible through, an internal cause of tooth discoloration with external causes such as the effects of foods, beverages, and tobacco. combine, and will cause the teeth of most adults to become discolored as they age.

Causes of teeth discoloration

Teeth discoloration has various causes. Certain foods and drinks can stain teeth, and as we’ve discussed, tooth discoloration is a product of several biological factors, including the transparency of tooth enamel.

There are many causes of tooth discoloration—some of which are probably preventable, and many of which are beyond your control. This comprehensive list can help you find the cause of your teeth discoloration, and in some cases, help prevent further discoloration.

Foods and drinks

Many foods and drinks can change the external color of the teeth. Some of these foods that change the color of teeth the most are:

Acidic foods and citrus fruits

Acidic foods and citrus fruits cause tooth enamel to break down and leave dentin exposed – the yellow tissue under the tooth enamel that is made up of calcium and phosphate crystals.


To all coffee lovers, I have to say, sorry. Coffee contains tannin, which causes stains on the teeth and changes the color of the teeth. In addition, it is acidic, and changes the pH balance of the mouth. What does this mean? Other acidic foods can damage your teeth even faster.


According to scientists, the darker the tea, the more likely it is to stain the teeth. Herbal teas and white tea can also wear down the enamel of the teeth and cause stains on the teeth.


Sweets can discolor your tongue, which means they can also stain your teeth. But if you don’t eat them often, you won’t have a problem.

Curry spice and tomato sauce

Curry and ketchup may be delicious, but they can discolor teeth. Curry spice and tomato sauce are not only very saturated and colorful, but also acidic. Try to use lighter or creamy sauces. Wash your mouth and brush your teeth very soon after eating them.

Sports and energy drinks

Sports and energy drinks can also erode tooth enamel, making your teeth more prone to staining. Citric acid in drinks not only as a preservative increases their flavor and durability, but also causes tooth enamel erosion.

alcoholic drinks

This is true. Acid and tannin in red wine are among the main causes of discoloration and staining of teeth. Wine is an acidic drink—just like coffee, tea, and soda—so it corrodes tooth enamel. Do you think red wine is less dangerous than red wine? Don’t be fooled by its pale color. Its acidity level is still there.

Soft drinks

The dark compounds in dark-colored carbonated drinks cause stains on the surface of the teeth. Then, the enamel of your teeth absorbs these compounds and causes the teeth to change color to yellow or brown. Once again, acids and pigments are to blame.


Both smoking and chewing tobacco can lead to discoloration of teeth.

Dental care

Poor dental hygiene, such as inadequate brushing and flossing, can lead to discolored teeth.

Trauma and disease

Any trauma, illness, or disease that affects the development of tooth enamel in children—whether in the womb or during the period when teeth are developing (under age 8)—can lead to tooth discoloration. become Trauma or damage to permanent teeth can also cause teeth discoloration. For example, chemotherapy and radiation can also change the color of teeth.

Medical treatments

Sometimes medical treatments can be associated with stains on teeth, and several classes of medications can cause stains on teeth, including high blood pressure medications, chemotherapy, antihistamines, and some antidepressants. Psychosis (tranquilizers).

To know how to get rid of stains on teeth, it helps to know what kind of stain you are dealing with. Complete and comprehensive research has been done on this issue, which shows that some stain particles remain on the enamel of the teeth, while others work on the enamel over time and penetrate below the surface of the tooth, which causes The teeth become dull and stained.

Are our teeth white?

Tooth color is relative, and it can be difficult to tell how well teeth whitening products will work at removing or reducing stains. The results of a study published in 2004 in the Journal of Dentistry show that even experts and professionals may disagree when evaluating a tooth, and an expert may evaluate the whiteness of a tooth differently in different situations.

slow One of the methods of evaluating the effectiveness of whitening products is to take high-resolution digital images of teeth and assign numerical values ​​to describe the effects of whitening in three ways: reduction of yellowness, reduction of redness, and increase of brightness.

Teeth whitening for older people

Although everyone knows that everyone gets more attractive as they age, teeth stains are one of the unattractive body changes that occur during the aging process. In fact, one of the three main categories of tooth discoloration is age-related discoloration, which is the result of several different factors.

Why are the elderly prone to tooth stains?

First, with age, the outer layer of tooth enamel becomes thinner and thinner over time, revealing the natural yellow color of the tooth’s central tissue, called dentin. In addition, with age, tooth enamel naturally yellows. In addition, damage or incidents that happen to the teeth, which happen over time during your life, cause tooth discoloration that can be noticeable as you get older.

How to remove stains on teeth?

Fortunately, there are several treatment options for stains on teeth. By performing oral hygiene routines including brushing twice and flossing once a day, and visiting the dentist twice a year, as well as by limiting the consumption of drinks that stain the teeth, the teeth Keep yourself healthy and looking good. Regular use of whitening products will help you keep your teeth whiter and brighter.

Regardless of the type of discoloration your teeth have, there are several safe over-the-counter teeth whitening products that can help you correct discolored teeth and Create a beautiful and white smile for yourself. Ask your dentist to recommend the best teeth whitening option to remove age spots and teeth discoloration.

Prevention is better than treatment

Now that you know what causes your teeth to become discolored and stained, you can prevent the lifestyle factors that cause them to occur. External teeth stains are more preventable. The foods and drinks you eat are among these.

You don’t need to give up all the things that change the color of the teeth, just limit their consumption and try to use a straw for drinks, and swallow food as quickly as possible, before it Allow the harmful substances to stick to the surface of the teeth and wash your mouth and brush your teeth as soon as possible, hoping to prevent stains.