Everyone’s teeth darken to some extent over time. Some of this darkening and dulling is a part of the natural aging process. Staining, on the other hand, is partly under your control. Over the years, your teeth will naturally start to appear more yellow as the enamel thins. The dentin under the enamel is yellow in colour and starts to show through. Fortunately, the teeth whitening process can lighten the outer enamel layer and mask the yellow dentine.
Good dental hygiene can also help slow the darkening process. Keeping your teeth clean, smooth, and free from tartar will help them stay their whitest and stain-resistant. Good dental hygiene starts at home with proper brushing and flossing but requires regular professional cleanings as well. If you have your teeth whitened, proper dental hygiene is a must for maintaining the results.
To put it simply, your teeth can be darkened by what you choose to put in your mouth. Some foods and beverages or even medications that can darken your teeth include:
- Red wine
- Dark berries
- Smoking and chewing tobacco
- Certain antibiotics, such as Tetracycline
Darkening From The Inside
Your teeth can be dark on the inside for many reasons too. Staining of the inside of your tooth is called intrinsic staining. A common form of intrinsic staining is the discolouration caused by tetracycline use during childhood. Trauma to a tooth can also cause it to darken from the inside.
In some cases, tooth whitening can be effective for intrinsic darkening, but intrinsic staining is often resistant to whitening. If tooth whitening cannot lighten your teeth to your desired shade, Dr. Silver can offer other solutions, such as porcelain veneers, to give you a beautiful, white smile.