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My Teeth Are Stained and Dingy. What Can I Do?

My Teeth Are Stained and Dingy. What Can I Do?

Teeth get yellowed, stained, and dingy for lots of reasons. Considering they’re exposed to lots of pigments every day — natural and artificial — it’s really not too surprising. But food colorings are just one cause of tooth stains. There are plenty of other causes, too. 

Regardless of what causes tooth discoloration, one fact remains the same: Yellow, dingy, stained teeth can wreak havoc on your smile — and your confidence.

As a top-rated cosmetic dentist in Waterford, Michigan, Marvin Taylor, DDS, and the team at Dr. Taylor’s Family Dental Center offer several options to help whiten teeth and restore your dazzling smile. If your teeth aren’t looking their whitest, here's how he can help.

Whitening treatments

Yes, you can choose over-the-counter whitening products, like toothpastes, strips, and mouthwashes. But while they might seem convenient, these products just can’t give you the same results as a professional whitening treatment. 

Dr. Taylor offers two types of in-office professional teeth whitening treatments: Zoom!® teeth whitening and the Epic® whitening system that uses laser technology to brighten teeth and lift away stains. Both techniques achieve dramatic whitening — from 6-12 shades whiter — in a single visit.

For deeper stains that extend well below the enamel layer, Dr. Taylor might recommend other treatments, like veneers, bonding, or crowns. Each of these options can cover deep discoloration due to tooth damage, root canals, long-term use of medications, and other causes.

Lifestyle changes for whiter teeth

In addition to professional treatments, there are some things you can do to reduce your risk of staining and help your professional whitening treatment look its best. 

Tobacco products

It doesn’t matter whether you chew it or smoke it: Tobacco produces a dark, sticky residue that leaves behind yellow or brown tooth stains, especially on your front teeth. Avoiding tobacco products can eliminate this staining risk, and it can also reduce your risks of gum disease, tooth loss, and oral cancers.

High-acid foods

Foods high in acids won’t necessarily cause stains, but they can temporarily soften your tooth enamel, making it easier for staining pigments to penetrate your teeth. A lot of high-acid foods, like tomato products and citrus fruits, are healthy in other ways, so you don’t want to eliminate them. Instead, rinse well after eating something high in acids, and try to avoid eating staining foods at the same time as you consume high-acid foods.

Foods with deep pigments

Coffee, tea, red wine, deeply-colored spices, and dark berries can all stain your teeth. As with high-acid foods, you don’t have to eliminate these foods and drinks from your diet, but you should rinse well after eating or drinking to help remove pigments from your tooth surfaces.

Hygiene habits

Brushing and flossing are very important for preventing cavities and gum disease, but they also play a central role in helping your smile look its best. Brushing and flossing get rid of sticky plaque film that traps pigment residues. Many pastes and mouthwashes provide gentle whitening that can help your professional whitening treatment last even longer.

Don’t let stained, dingy teeth affect your smile

Your smile gets noticed — probably a lot more than you think. If it’s stained or dingy, it can have a big impact on the impression you’re making. With cosmetic treatments from Dr. Taylor, you can restore your pearly whites and feel great about smiling again. 

To learn how we can help your smile look its dazzling best, call 248-681-8100 or book an appointment online at our Waterford, Michigan, practice today.

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