Americans really want white teeth. Walk near the toothpaste in any grocery store, and you’ll see hundreds of products claiming to “whiten,” “brighten,” or repair your smile. You’ll find expensive teeth whitening strips, probably with security devices on them, and it some places, you might even see charcoal toothpaste. Some people have even become so obsessed with whitening their smile, that they’ve earned the title, bleachorexia.

If you want your smile to be brighter, whitening products aren’t necessary the only solution. Without spending a penny, you can put in place a few preventative measures to eliminate the foods staining your teeth in the first place.

Is Diet Staining Your Teeth? | Dentist Butler PA

How do Teeth Become Stained in the First Place?

The answer should be obvious: foods and drink. Everything we consume has to pass through our mouths to get to our stomachs, and some of these things can make our teeth yellow in the process.

Even though enamel is the toughest substance in our body, it’s still susceptible to staining agents or pigments found in some particularly colorful foods. These foods and drinks are called chromogens, and include coffee, red wine, tea, berries, chocolate, and much more. But staining agents aren’t the only thing to be worried about. Eating and drinking highly acidic foods can weaken enamel and make it easier for our teeth to become stained in the first place by opening the pores in your enamel. That’s why things like coffee, soda, and red wine can produce the perfect situation for your mouth to become stained.

How to Protect Your Teeth

The obvious way to protect your teeth is by avoiding these foods and drinks altogether. To be honest, though, who wants to give up coffee, wine, or both? Another thing to consider is how many staining agents exist in the first place. These substances are certainly not the only ones that cause staining, as plenty of foods are both acidic and contain chromogens.

One easy way to avoid stains on your teeth is rinsing your mouth with water after a cup of coffee or glass of wine. While your first instinct may be to brush your teeth, this would be a mistake. Because the acidity of wine or coffee can soften your enamel, brushing directly after a cup of coffee can actually rub away protective layers.

If your teeth are already stained, professional teeth whitening can help. Using a whitening agent such as peroxide, a dental hygienist can dissolve current stains, leaving your teeth up to eight shades whiter. However, if you continue to eat and drink foods that cause stains, these effects will only be temporary.

If you are looking to beautify your smile in Butler, experienced cosmetic dentist Dr. Bob can help. He will listen to your cosmetic goals and work with you to design a smile solution that gives you all you ask for in a way that can fit in your budget. To get started with cosmetic dentistry, please call (724) 282-4436 today for an appointment at Advanced Dentistry of Butler.