Even when you brush, floss, and visit your dentist for regular cleanings, tooth enamel can develop stains. Cigarettes, red wine, and coffee, for example, can all discolor your smile. Getting older may also cause your teeth to lose their vibrancy over time. But did you know that there are also many foods that can contribute to staining? Whether you want to protect the results of a recent teeth whitening treatment or are simply trying to maintain your smile’s brightness, here are five discoloring foods to watch for.
5 Foods That Contribute to Tooth Discoloration
Blackberries, blueberries, and raspberries are among the many fruits that contain tannins that produce dark colors. When left on the enamel surface for too long, these berries can contribute to staining. If you want to enjoy the health benefits of these fruits, try combining them with “natural detergent” foods—such as cheese and apples—which can help scrub the teeth clean.
2. Citrus Fruits
Citrus fruits—such as lemons, grapefruits, and oranges—may not directly cause staining, but their acids can still affect the color of your smile. Specifically, citric acids can wear away at enamel. Not only does this action create an increased risk for cavities, but it can also expose dentin—a sensitive portion of the tooth that produces a yellow hue.
3. Dark Sauces
Dark sauces and condiments can easily compromise the effects of teeth whitening if consumed in excess. Common threats include soy sauce, tomato sauce, and balsamic vinegar. Fortunately, you can defend against tooth discoloration by mixing these toppings with cruciferous vegetables and leafy greens that help remove staining food particles.
Often recognized by its bright yellow hue, curry is a popular spice found in many Indian dishes. Just as curry can easily stain clothing, its pigmentation is also known to yellow smiles. For this reason, it’s a good idea to rinse your mouth with a glass of water after eating a curry dish. Mixing celery or cauliflower into the entrée may also help promote teeth cleaning as you chew.
When sugar sticks to teeth, oral bacteria will consume and digest it for energy. This activity produces acids that can wear away at enamel and cause cavities. In advanced cases of tooth decay, teeth may develop dark brown or black spots. Since this damage cannot be repaired through teeth whitening—and usually requires fillings—it’s best to limit your sugar intake and rinse your mouth with water after consuming any of the sweet stuff.
While eating strategically can help you keep your smile stain-free, you’ll likely find that your teeth need a boost every so often. That’s why Pure Dental Care NY is dedicated to providing patients with advanced teeth whitening services. In one short appointment, this Manhattan dentist can comfortably lift surface stains and brighten your smile by multiple shades. To learn about all the cosmetic dentistry services this clinic offers, visit their website. For appointments, call a friendly staff member at (212) 256-1292.