By their natural design, teeth are made to make eating an easier and more pleasant experience. While these tough tools can chew and bite with strength, they are not completely shielded from the things you eat and drink. Given that enamel is porous, it’s easy for certain items to stain the teeth’s outer surface. Although this discoloration isn’t normally a cause for concern, it can harm the look of your smile. If you want to avoid the need for ongoing cosmetic dentistry services, here are a few types of foods and beverages that can contribute to dental staining.
3 Items That Can Cause Dental Staining
1. Acidic Foods
Foods that are highly acidic wear away at the enamel, leaving teeth more vulnerable to cavities and discoloration. This discoloration occurs when the worn-away enamel exposes dentin—sensitive and yellowish material inside the tooth. The risk for staining, as well as the subsequent need for professional teeth whitening from a cosmetic dentistry specialist, is higher if these acidic foods tend to stick to teeth. Common offenders in this category include tomatoes, pasta sauce, citrus fruits, and grapes.
2. Pigmented Foods
If a food is dark enough to stain your clothing, it contains pigments that can also discolor your smile. For example, dark berries, such as blueberries and pomegranate seeds, can darken your enamel. Curry, on the other hand, contains pigments that can turn your teeth to a shade of yellow. It’s also wise to watch out for dark-colored condiments that can easily adhere to teeth and contribute to staining, including soy sauce and balsamic vinegar.
3. Dark, Acidic Drinks
Working similarly to the above-listed foods, dark-colored and acidic beverages wear away at the enamel and leave behind stains. However, drinks tend to stick to teeth more easily than foods, increasing the risk of discoloration. Some drinks to stay wary of include coffee, soda, red wine, sports drinks, and fruit juices. Darker teas—such as Earl Grey and black varieties—also contain tannins that can gradually discolor enamel.
If you indulge in these items, you can minimize staining by also eating fibrous fruits and vegetables, rinsing your mouth with a glass of water, or brushing 30 minutes after your meal. However, when dental staining becomes noticeable, it’s best to visit a cosmetic dentistry specialist at Dental Distinctions in Kalispell, MT. Using advanced teeth whitening solutions, this provider will safely and effectively enhance your smile. To learn more about all of their cosmetic dentistry services, including dental implants and veneers, visit this clinic online, or call (406) 755-4166 to schedule an appointment.