It can seem unfair. You brush your teeth twice a day, every day. You floss once a day, every day. Despite all of your efforts, your teeth are yellow – and they’re staying yellow. Why is this happening? Is there anything you can do about it? We have the answers.
The Anatomy of a Tooth
We’re not going to get into the whole anatomy of a tooth, just the two most important parts that pertain to yellow teeth: enamel and dentin. You see, enamel is a white-blue colour, whereas dentin is yellow-brown. As your enamel wears away, more dentin is exposed, which leads to your teeth looking more yellow.
Enamel tends to wear away more quickly when you’re not taking care of your teeth, but you can actually contribute to enamel wear through brushing. When you brush immediately after a meal (especially an acidic one), you can actually encourage the acids to corrode your enamel.
Stains You Can’t Brush Away
Do you love smoking? Coffee? Alcohol? If you answered yes to any of the above, there’s some bad news – these things can stain your teeth pretty easily, and they’ll be stained in a way that brushing won’t be able to remove.
In part, that’s because some food items are acidic, which contributes to the aforementioned enamel erosion. Other foods contain tannins – named so because of their use in tanning. As you can imagine, things used for tanning can create pretty serious stains. Going to get a cleaning regularly can certainly help, but some external stains can only be dealt with by having a whitening procedure done.
Internal tooth staining can occur due to injuries, though this type of staining needs to be treated differently, and can often result in grey or dark colouration.
Health and Genetics
There are all kinds of other factors that can affect how yellow your teeth are. As we age, we may naturally lose some enamel – what’s more, some people are naturally born with less enamel than others.
Your nutrition can also affect your enamel – calcium deficiency can result in weakened enamel. Medications you take can also affect enamel and the colour of your teeth.
With all this in mind, it’s important to remember that some people’s teeth are just naturally more yellow than others. In fact, almost everyone is going to have some amount of yellow in their teeth, and that’s okay! Everyone’s smile is different, and a society of people with only pearly white teeth would be far less interesting.
If you’re worried about the colour of your teeth, give us a call. We have a teeth whitening clinic Winnipeg can trust – we’ll do a full consultation with you, and determine exactly why your teeth are discoloured. From there, we can propose a treatment plan, including a colour consultation to figure out exactly what colour you’d like your teeth to be.