What Causes Staining On Teeth? 5 Reasons

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What Causes Staining On Teeth?

When it comes to maintaining the whiteness of your teeth, you should consider some basic practices. There are several factors that can cause staining on teeth. Some of them are related to food and drink consumption. For instance, eating foods rich in pigments and red wine may cause teeth to become stained. 

Coffee and tea can also cause discoloration in teeth. The compounds found in these drinks can erode the enamel and expose the inner layer of the teeth. 

As a result, a buildup of plaque and tartar can form, which makes the teeth appear yellow. A dentist can remove this bacterial buildup.

Let’s see where else the stains might come from:


Fluorosis is a common condition that causes teeth to become stained. 

Its symptoms can range from small white spots to dark brown stains and rough enamel. Ideally, teeth should be smooth and creamy white. 

If you notice streaks of white on your teeth, see a dentist as soon as possible. In mild cases, fluorosis only affects a small percentage of your teeth.

During early childhood, permanent teeth start to form in the jawbone. By the time a child reaches the age of eight, they will have crowns on their permanent teeth. These crowns are the part of the tooth that you can see when you smile. 

However, if you consume excess fluoride, you can end up with discoloration on your teeth long before your permanent teeth erupt.

Children who have dental fluorosis can suffer from embarrassment about the color of their teeth. It can be difficult for them to smile because other people may perceive them as having rotten or dirty teeth. 

Even mild cases can ruin a child’s self-esteem. In the past, fluoride advocates have played down the negative effects of fluorosis on children, but studies have shown that public perception of dental fluorosis is very negative.

teeth stains


If you take tetracycline, you’re most likely aware of its effects on teeth. 

This antibiotic causes staining when it comes into contact with the enamel on your teeth. The good news is that this staining is not permanent and can often be treated. Your dentist can recommend whitening solutions and prescription fluoride toothpaste to help whiten your teeth. 

The results won’t last forever, however, so you’ll have to continue using the prescribed toothpaste for three weeks or more to maintain the whitening effects.

Although the staining caused by tetracycline has decreased considerably in recent years, some adults still show signs of it. Depending on the type of tetracycline, the discoloration can be either mild or moderate. 

Mild staining is limited to the incisal surfaces of the teeth, while moderate staining affects the whole tooth surface. The color can range from a deep yellow or brown to a gray color. Most tetracycline-induced discoloration does not appear to be severe or visible, and the presence of bands or ridges is rare.

Despite this risk, tetracycline is still considered a safe and effective medicine. The World Health Organization lists it as an essential medicine. 

However, it can have side effects, including loss of appetite, vomiting, and diarrhea. In addition to causing staining on teeth, tetracycline is associated with calcification in the teeth, which can damage the enamel.

The calcium-tetracycline orthophosphate complex forms in the teeth and darkens on exposure to light. 

Age-Related Stains

One of the most unpleasant changes that people face with age is the formation of stains on their teeth. 

Luckily, there are several steps that can help prevent age-related stains from developing on your teeth. These include brushing your teeth regularly, flossing, and seeing your dentist for regular cleanings.


Smoking is one of the biggest causes of teeth staining, and quitting smoking is one of the best ways to eliminate stains. Brown rice can also be used as a natural teeth bleach, which is good for your oral health and can be an effective way to brighten your teeth. 

Besides tobacco use, alcohol consumption and acidic foods and drinks can also lead to staining. In addition to these factors, poor oral care can lead to the formation of plaque and stains on the teeth. 

However, teeth also naturally become more yellow as we age because the porous layer of enamel thins out and microscopic holes in it grow.

Foods That Stain Teeth

There are a variety of foods that can stain your teeth. 

Foods that have intense colors stain more easily than those that don’t. They also tend to stain white tablecloths and other surfaces. 

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate is a culprit. Dark chocolate contains a high amount of pigments, and it can cause a serious stain. However, if you eat dark chocolate in moderation, it will not harm your teeth. 

Dark Soy Sauce

Likewise, dark soy sauce can cause stains to appear on your teeth. You should also limit your intake of these highly concentrated sauces.

Carbonated Beverages

Carbonated beverages and sugary foods are also culprits for stains. Not only do they contain high levels of sugar, but they also stain your teeth. They also contain acid, which wears down your tooth enamel and contributes to cavities. 

Although it’s hard to avoid some of these foods completely, you can still enjoy them. Just take precautions and brush your teeth after every meal. 

Be sure to drink plenty of water and use a straw for drinks with dark colors.

Final Word

The best way to avoid tooth discoloration is to practice good oral hygiene. Avoid dark beverages and tobacco, and try to avoid smoking. 

In addition, brushing and flossing daily is crucial for maintaining healthy teeth. And remember to visit the dentist at least twice a year. Regular checkups will reveal any problems and help you avoid more extensive procedures.


Author Since:  September 18, 2018


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