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One of the first things you notice about someone is their smile. With a first impression being something you can never take back, we all admire a bright, healthy, and confident smile. Yet, it’s so easy for everyday living to cause our teeth to slowly discolor, leaving them a yellow, grey, or brown hue. Sometimes we can even get stains on our teeth that discolor only portions of our teeth. It’s important to know that there are two different causes of this discoloration—discoloration on the outside surface of the tooth, or discoloration coming from the inside.


  • Tobacco use. Whether you smoke it, or chew it, tobacco will stain your teeth.
  • Dental hygiene. Don’t forget to brush twice a day! Discoloration occurs from those rushed mornings or late nights when you just don’t make the time for proper brushing and flossing hygiene.
  • Medications. Check the side effects of your medications. There are certain antibiotics that can or have caused your teeth to be stained.
  • Genetics. Everyone is different, sometimes your less than brilliant teeth are a result of genetics, rather than anything that could have been prevented.
  • Certain foods and dark drinks. If you are consuming dark liquids such as soda, coffee, tea, or wine, you are slowly discoloring your teeth. Even dark spices or seasonings like soy sauce or curry will do the same. It’s not just unhealthy food that will discolor them either! Tomato sauce, beets, curry, and berries can all cause tooth discoloration.

What are you supposed to do to help prevent your teeth from becoming discolored?

  • Moderation: Be aware of what you consume, and do so in moderation if you know that it may stain your teeth.
  • Break your habit: Slow down on any tobacco use, or quit altogether to give your overall health and your smile a boost!
  • Use a straw: If you drink teeth-staining beverages through a straw it can help prevent some of the contact with your teeth.
  • Brush or rinse: Simply brush your teeth or rinse out your mouth with water after eating or drinking a dark food or beverage.

What are your best options to brighten your smile?

  • Cosmetic Dentistry: Consult with your dentist about your best cosmetic dentistry options. These options may include bonding or veneers.
  • Whitening: Over-the-counter whitening treatments or ZOOM! in-office whitening are both wonderful options that are available with our office.

At our office, we will take X-rays to make sure that any tooth discoloration you are noticing isn’t coming from within your teeth. The discoloration which comes from within may signal deeper problems with your dental health. We will always recommend the best option for your dental care while helping you obtain your most confident smile!