When you ask someone what the first thing is that they notice about someone, quite often you’ll hear that the answer is “their smile”. Smiles leave an immediate impression with anyone who meets you – it’s often described as your calling card. A good smile is so important that celebrities regularly spend thousands of dollars on getting their smiles just perfect. You may not have thousands of dollars to spend getting a dazzling smile, and the truth is – you probably don’t need to! For most people, a million-dollar smile is as simple as teeth whitening!
A brighter, whiter smile gives off the idea of youth, health and vitality! As we age, our teeth often turn yellow and stain. This can be due to a number of factors, such as:
- Antibiotics: Believe it or not, there are some antibiotics that wear away the enamel on the front of the tooth. Children under the age of 8 can be especially susceptible to this type of yellowing since their baby teeth aren’t quite as strong and resilient as adult teeth are. Typically tetracycline and doxycycline are the culprits in this case. Some mouth rinses also stain and discolor. Adult teeth can be stained by antibiotics, but are more commonly stained by antihistamines, high blood pressure medications and antipsychotic medications.
- Age: Enamel wears as you age, exposing the yellow dentin beneath
- Diet: Coffee, tea, dark soft drinks, wines, and even some fruits and vegetables can stain your teeth. Acidic foods and drinks can also wear away the enamel and expose the dentin.
- Disease: Chemotherapy and radiation treatment can both affect the enamel and the dentin of the tooth, causing discoloration.
- Genetics: Some people’s teeth are just naturally more yellow than others.
- Trauma: Trauma from a fall or an impact to the tooth can cause a stain, loss of enamel or damaged area on the tooth.
- Smoking: Smoking stains the teeth very quickly. It also affects the circulation in the mouth, which may have an effect on the way your enamel is formed. The same is true of chewing tobacco.
- Poor hygiene: Brushing, flossing and rinsing are all important to remove food, drinks and any other substances and deposits that may cause loss of enamel or staining. Whether it is because of a lack of know-how or an inability to do so properly, inadequate hygiene practices will lead to yellowing.
Cadena Family Dentistry has experience in dealing with all of these causes of yellowing as well as many others. There are several methods to whiten the teeth and the best method will be determined by the underlying cause of your yellowing. We will also need to know what previous dental work you have had done.
Some whitening methods only work on the natural tooth and will not lift stains or whiten any caps, bonds, etc. that you may have. This is not as important if the work is to the rear of the mouth, but caps are fairly common at the front of the mouth and would be very visibly a different color if an improper technique were used. We will help you determine the best method for you when you arrive in office.