How to Remove Stains from Teeth: A Step-By-Step Guide

The global tooth whitening industry is worth well over $3.2 billion worldwide. For an industry that promises a positive impression with every electrifying smile, it’s probably best to know what it takes to actually preserve your pearly whites.

If your chompers aren’t looking the way you want them to, then this article just might be for you. Read here on how to remove stains from teeth the safe way. That way you can keep your smile looking its best.

What is Teeth Staining?

Teeth stains occur when teeth turn other unsightly colors besides white. Examples of these other unpleasant colors found on stained teeth could include yellow, brown or black.

Compounds known as Chromogens most commonly leave stains on teeth. These compounds are found in certain drinks or food that have a bold, rich color. Other drinks and foods have a substance called Tannins that can also leave stains on teeth.

Teeth stains will grow and develop both on and below a tooth’s surface. Both Chromogens and Tannins will wear away your teeth’s protective enamel and increase the potential for stains to set in.

What Causes Teeth Staining?

Teeth staining can be triggered by health issues. These health-related causes can range from medication to poor dental hygiene. Teeth staining falls into these main groups: intrinsic and extrinsic stains as well as age-related staining. Here’s a description of each of these groups and how they can steal away a beautiful smile.

Intrinsic Staining

Intrinsic staining strikes the tooth’s Dentin, the area below a tooth’s surface. Intrinsic staining usually happens in response to medications like acne medicine or antibiotics. Another stain-causing chemical, Chlorhexidine, is found in prescription-strength mouthwash, which will also discolor your teeth.

Extrinsic Staining

Extrinsic staining happens when particles collect on top of the tooth’s enamel. Chemicals that give drinks and food their individual colors soon cover each tooth. Other acids commonly found in drink and food will wear away each tooth’s enamel as well, making your teeth prone to staining.

Age-related Staining

Age-related staining is a combination of both intrinsic and extrinsic factors. For example, Dentin will naturally turn yellow over time. Your tooth enamel will also start to wear away as you get older as well.

When this occurs, your tooth’s Dentin will start to show through your outer enamel. Tooth chipping or other injuries that happen over time will also create tooth discoloration, especially if the tooth’s center is damaged.

How to Remove Stains From Teeth

The journey to remove staining from teeth is a combination of long-term oral hygiene practices as well as quick remedies you can buy from the store. Here is your step-by-step guide on how to remove these stubborn stains.

Avoid Drinks You Know Will Stain

We’ve discussed that drinks with rich, bold colors can stain teeth. This includes red wine, coffee/tea and colas. What you probably don’t know is that there are other drinks that are similar to these obvious staining compounds that you should also avoid.

White wine and sugar-free sodas are also culprits in the teeth staining wars. Both of these beverages are acidic and erode tooth enamel fast. They can also boost the staining from other foods you may eat. Try to eliminate these drinks from your everyday diet to improve both your overall as well as your oral health.

Use Straws

If you’re not ready to eliminate those staining drinks from your life just yet, then start to drink them with a straw. Sip iced tea or sodas through a drinking straw. Straws will help you keep staining liquids from touching your teeth.

Don’t let these staining liquids linger inside your mouth either. Swallow them right away and avoid gulping so you don’t choke.

Rinse After Eating and Drinking

Rinse your mouth out with some water immediately after you drink or eat something that you know will leave teeth stains. If you can’t brush after your meals, chew a stick of sugarless gum. Most sugarless gums contain a chemical called Xylitol that stimulates your saliva production and cleanses out your mouth.

Brush and Floss Everyday

Brushing and flossing your teeth every day helps remove tartar and plaque buildup. These buildups will wear away at the tooth enamel and let those staining foods and drinks sink right in. Try to remember to brush after every meal and floss at least once a day.

Brush With a Whitening Toothpaste

Off-the-shelf whitening toothpastes contain mild polishing abrasives that can remove surface stains. These abrasives include hydrogen peroxide or carbamide. These products will lighten a tooth’s color by one shade.

Use a Whitening Strip

Teeth-whitening strips are made from a thin, plastic strip of polyethylene. These strips are coated with either bleach or peroxide. These chemicals will then work on your teeth to remove any extrinsic stains or discoloration.

Place each strip along your top and bottom teeth so that the bleach touches your enamel. It’s best to brush your teeth before using a whitening strip so that bacteria can’t get trapped between your teeth and the strip. Brush your teeth a half hour before you apply a whitening strip so that strip won’t irritate the gums.

Next Steps

Do you feel like you know a little bit more about how to remove stains from teeth the right way? Pay attention to your oral health care so that you can fight off those particles that will stain your teeth. Brushing and flossing will safeguard your teeth enamel and keep ugly yellowing stains from building up.

Drink juice and soda with straws so that you can be sure they won’t touch your teeth. If you swallow them fast, they won’t linger within your mouth.

You can also check our website for more advice on the steps to a healthy shine. We bring expertise and individual attention to every patient we meet. Give us a call today!

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