Many people worry as their teeth lose the pearly white sheen they had as children. While there are no ways to completely prevent tooth yellowing, understanding the causes might lessen the changes. The tooth has two components when it comes to yellowing: the enamel coating on the outside, and the dentin tissue in the interior of the tooth. Let’s look at both components.
The enamel can yellow from some of the foods we eat – anything with high acid and tannin levels like sodas or sports drinks or wine, for example, will stain. Tannins grip onto the enamel, creating the stain. Compounds like polyphenols are found in some fruits like berries and pomegranates, and while they stain the teeth, brushing after eating will prevent long term stain.
Other foods like dark sauces will stain your teeth, but eating a green salad or some steamed vegetables before enjoying the sauces can create a layer over the enamel, protecting it from the sauce’s stains.
The dentin tissue is the main reason for yellowing, and that, unfortunately, is just a product of nature. Dentin is a living tissue that ages like the rest of our body parts, and as it ages, the dentin turns yellow. While we can’t stop aging, there are a few things to pay attention to that might slow it down.
Teeth grinding is a high-pressure habit that can force as much as 250 pounds per square inch on teeth. Grinding speeds up the aging of the dentin, which can cause irreversible yellowing. A custom night guard is a good solution to nighttime grinding.
By the same token, when we fall and injure our mouth, a tooth may turn yellow due to the trauma, which ages the dentin. A poor diet will often speed the aging process in the entire body, including the dentin tissue. Wearing a mouth guard for physical activity and maintaining a healthy diet are good ways to keep your teeth young and white.
To learn more, contact us at 303-789-2020 or find us online at https://www.dentalartsofcherryhills.com.