A beautiful smile is a great self-esteem booster. It makes you look sociable and feel confident when interacting with others. However, teeth staining can get in the way of this. The discolouration may either be superficial or occur within the tooth layers.
The three common types of stains are extrinsic, intrinsic and age-related. The good news is that some of these stains can be remedied with teeth whitening treatment, restoring your pearly whites.
Read along to learn more about the three types of teeth stains.
Extrinsic stains occur when the outer layer of the tooth (called the tooth enamel) becomes discoloured. Common causes include heavy smoking and heavy drinking of beverages like coffee, wine and cola.
Teeth whitening treatment can help to eliminate the stains, but adopting good oral health practices and going for professional teeth cleaning is vital to keeping your teeth bright and white.
This is more intrusive than the extrinsic kind. It affects the dentine -- the hard, calcified layer of a tooth found beneath the enamel -- causing it to darken or adopt a yellow tint. Common causes of intrinsic discolouration include the following:
- Exposure to fluoride during early years of childhood (usually when the fluoride is common in water)
- Exposure to tetracycline antibiotics from your mother during the second and third trimester of pregnancy
- Internal bleeding in a permanent tooth
- Medical conditions, such as dentinogenesis imperfecta, which tend to result in coloured teeth -- mostly purple, grey or amber
Common ways to prevent intrinsic staining involve avoiding early childhood exposure to fluorine, adopting preventative oral health measures such as brushing your teeth after meals, rinsing your mouth after drinking wine, cola or coffee, stopping smoking and scheduling visits to a dentist for professional teeth cleaning.
If your teeth are already stained, a dentist can administer teeth whitening treatment to remove the stains.
This occurs from a combination of extrinsic and intrinsic variables, as well as the natural yellowing of the teeth as the years go by. The latter occurs when you become old and the enamel wears out and becomes thinner over time.
While teeth whitening treatments can help to fix the problem, your dentist will have to first ascertain that there are no underlying diseases contributing to the staining of your teeth.
Whether you suffer from extrinsic, intrinsic, age-related or a combination of the above-highlighted types of stains, it is important to consult a qualified dentist before undergoing teeth whitening treatment. Book an appointment with a dentist today to discuss your teeth whitening options.