The majority of patients, when asked which cosmetic change they would like to make to their smile, report that they want whiter teeth. If you brush and floss your teeth diligently every day, you can enjoy healthy looking teeth. However, this doesn’t guarantee your teeth will look as white as you desire. Other factors in your life can cause your teeth to look more yellow than white, and you may need some professional help to brighten your smile.But what causes teeth to turn yellow, dull, or discolored? Here are a few factors:
- Age: Over time, the enamel on your teeth becomes thinner and reveals your dentin, the yellowish underlayer. Enamel can also be worn away by brushing harshly, which is why we recommend using a soft-bristle toothbrush and gentle, circular movements.
- Tobacco use: Both smoking and chewing tobacco can introduce enamel-staining substances such as tar and nicotine to your pearly whites.
- Medications: Certain medications such as antihistamines, antipsychotics, and high blood pressure include tooth darkening as a side effect. Furthermore, antibiotics like doxycycline and tetracycline can darken babies’ teeth prenatally.
- Trauma: An injury in the mouth caused by sports or an accident can darken a tooth if the tooth reacts to the injury by putting down more dentin, which is yellow in color.
- Drink: One of the most common causes of discolored teeth are everyday drinks such as tea, coffee, and wine, which contain high amounts of chromogens (color pigments) that create stains when they attach to your tooth enamel.
If your teeth have become duller or discolored and you would like to brighten your smile, Cambridge Family Dentistry offers various tooth whitening options. Give our office a call at 316-687-2110 for more information about teeth whitening in Wichita, Kansas! Our dentist, Dr. Dean Wright, and team are happy to help you with all of your dental needs!