If your smile isn't quite as white and bright as it once was, it can have a real impact on your self esteem. You might even avoid looking in the mirror, or maybe you make sure to smile with your mouth closed in photographs to avoid having to see your discoloured teeth. If these things sound familiar to you, you're probably wondering why your teeth got this way and how you can avoid the problem in the future. Here are the top three reasons for teeth discolouration, and how you can resolve the issue.
Cause #1: Beverages
Everyone enjoys certain favourite beverages, and sometimes your favourites are even a part of your daily routine. However, not all beverages are created equal when it comes to their impact on your teeth. Whilst water won't cause discolouration at all, there are a number of beverages that can spell disaster for your teeth colour. These include:
- Brown and caramel coloured fizzy drinks
- Red wine
- Grape juice
- Cranberry juice
The drinks above are among the most popular beverages in the world -- and you might be accustomed to having them every morning, noon, evening, or at all times in between. If you simply can't give up your favourite beverages, try to at least cut down on your consumption. If possible, use a straw while drinking to bypass your tooth enamel whenever you have these types of beverages.
Cause #2: Smoking
Cigarette smoking is one of the leading causes of teeth discolouration. Many smokers develop a yellow coloured hue on their teeth enamel over time, a result of the tar in the cigarettes. In addition to staining your teeth, cigarette smoking is unhealthy -- and in fact, potentially deadly. Whilst stopping smoking right now won't lighten your teeth (only teeth whitening can do that!) it will definitely prevent further discolouration.
Whilst e-cigarettes don't typically stain the teeth since they don't contain tar, the darker colours of vaping liquid (flavours like coffee) may cause teeth to grow darker. If you smoke e-cigarettes, it's best to stick with the clear coloured liquids (unflavoured or flavours like vanilla) to avoid potential teeth darkening.
Cause #3: Medication
Certain medications may cause the teeth to darken. The medications most associated with this are antibiotics such as tetracycline. If your teeth have darkened and you can't identify a specific cause like smoking or beverage consumption, check with your doctor to determine if any of your past or current medications could have caused the problem. If medication darkened your teeth, your doctor may be able to prescribe an alternative medication without this side effect.
If you have teeth discolouration for any of the reasons above, there's an excellent solution available through your dentist: professional teeth whitening. There are both in-office whitening treatments and take-home whitening treatments, and one of them can help you get beautiful white teeth once again.