Having vibrantly white teeth is essential for a perfect smile and no matter what smile you parade, it always looks better whiter. People go to great effort taking care of their teeth. They brush, floss and have regular dental check ups. Often people fail to realize that the food that we eat can be the cause of discoloured teeth. Most people understand the regular culprits such as coffee and tea tannins or acidic soft-drinks, but don’t look at the food they eat as causes for their less than lustrous fangs. Here we look at some of the common foods that lead to stained teeth.
1. Citrus & Vinegar
Lemons, mandarins and oranges have many health benefits. They are rich with vitamins and antioxidants, are a good source of fibre and have cancer fighting properties. A squeeze of lemon in water is an ancient remedy to support digestion and there is nothing that quenches thirst quite as well as a juicy orange on a hot day. But these citrus fruits which have been heralded as the ultimate healthy fruit are disastrous for tooth enamel. Cider vinegar lowers blood sugar and has antibacterial and antifungal properties. The acid content of citrus foods & vinegars erodes the top enamel layer of the teeth exposing the yellow coloured dentin below the surface. If you’re looking to improve your smile’s shine we’re not saying give up your citrus fruits and cider vinegar for good, but if whiter teeth is the goal, reducing the amount you consume and buffering the acidity with water could be key.
As it turns out, sipping on a Chardonnay can also steal some of the white away from your smile. New York University researchers suggests that the lighter type of vino may make tooth stains darker. So while it doesn't actually cause the stains, its acid content creates little pockets on the surface of the tooth that allow other beverages to seep in deeper, the study's researchers explain. Still, red wine continues to beat out white wine when it comes to tooth staining thanks to the highly-pigmented substance known as Chromogen. So wine lovers the best way to prevent wine stained teeth is to use a toothpaste that contains a whitening agent. Alternatively, add some cheese to raise pH levels and slash the risk of cavities for good measure.
It stains your cookware and your countertops, so it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that it stains your teeth too. The property in curry that causes the stain is called a yellow molecule called curcumin which is found in turmeric. Turmeric has such powerful staining properties that it is often used to dye fabric as it bonds well to cotton and other fibers. These same binding properties are the reason why your smile will probably exhibit a yellow tinge after downing a plate of Tikka Masala. If you don’t want to avoid eating curry all together make sure to brush your teeth immediately after eating to scrub away any of that excess yellow and prevent staining.
4. Blueberries, Blackberries & Pomegranates
Blueberries are a super food associated with fighting off heart disease, lowering cholesterol and boosting the immune system. These anti-oxidant packed little berries have been named as one of the world’s healthiest foods. Blackberries, along with blueberries and pomegranates, although miraculous for health are one of the biggest stain producing foods on the planet. These richly pigmented berries cast a dark shade on tooth enamel dimming the light of your pearly whites. A good rule of thumb is if a food casts hard-to-remove stains on your clothes it will likely do the same thing to your teeth. Those seeking a naturally white smile may want to limit their intake of dark berries, and go strawberries and high-fibre fruits like apples and pears instead.
Sugar is a well recognized culprit of teeth staining and unlike the foods above, has no real health benefits to garnish. Bacteria loves the sugar that latches onto your teeth after enjoying a cookie, chocolate bar or cake and this is where the problem starts. The bacteria on your teeth begins producing an acid that dissolves the tooth enamel and leads to dental decay. We all know what happens after this. Darkened teeth, cavities, bad breath and periodontal disease or gingivitis. To keep the mouth flora healthy, the teeth white and the breath smelling optimal, avoid sugar all together. Not only is sugar bad for the teeth it also causes heart disease, obesity and cancer.
If your teeth are losing their lustre don’t fret. The discolouration of teeth is a normal part of life as we get older and expose our teeth to different foods and drinks, not to mention antibiotic staining, excess fluoride exposure, nerve degeneration and more. Luckily there are treatments that can dramatically return your teeth back to their natural shiny white state. At Smile Care Dental Studio we offer state-of-the-art teeth whitening solutions which reverse the discolouration of enamel. We have found effective ways to whiten teeth, providing beautiful and lasting results for our patients. If you desire a whiter more vibrant smile, contact Smile Care Dental Studio today, we can help!