Walter C. Dukes DDS Dentist Logo Santa Barbara CA

We have a great ocean view!

1809 CLIFF DRIVE, SUITE D, Santa Barbara, CA 93109

• 805-963-1222

Wondering how your favorite celebrities got their pearly white teeth? Some of them were born with them but others had to undergo teeth whitening procedure to get rid of their yellow tooth discoloration. Several things can affect your teeth’s color. Unfortunately, tooth discoloration will make you feel self-conscious, thereby, causing you to be hesitant to smile. There are two types of tooth discoloration: extrinsic and intrinsic. The intrinsic stains are difficult to remove. They are the result of using certain medications.

What Causes Your Teeth to Turn Yellow?

Having yellow teeth is one of the reasons many patients who visit Dr. Walter Dukes are looking for a smile makeover. But before going through this process, Dr. Walter will evaluate your teeth first and your goals. Dr. Walter will also have to determine your eating habits that might have caused your tooth discoloration. Bear in mind that several foods contain tannins that can cause yellow teeth. Coffee, wine, and soda are the most common causes of tooth discoloration because they can easily get into the enamel to cause long-term discoloration. Hence, if you regularly drink beverages rich in tannins, then Dr. Walter would recommend reducing its frequency. In that way, after a cosmetic dentistry procedure, your pearly whites will not go back to their yellowish form. Smoking is another culprit of tooth discoloration. Unfortunately, stains from smoking can be difficult to remove. However, if you quit smoking and follow an excellent oral hygiene practice, the discoloration may improve. Then again, you may need to go through a teeth whitening procedure to whiten your teeth.

Some medications can cause yellow teeth. Patients with cancer and are undergoing chemotherapy may develop tooth discoloration. Some types of medications for asthma and high blood pressure can also cause yellow teeth.

Lack of Oral Hygiene

It is a common culprit. Then again, even if you brush and floss diligently, you will still develop discolored teeth as you age. Furthermore, if you use fluoride excessively, it can lead to yellow teeth. It is especially true in children. Fortunately, extrinsic stains can be removed through various whitening options. However, Dr. Walter Dukes will still have to evaluate your condition first before recommending a teeth whitening procedure.

Why Extrinsic Stains Occur?

Enamel is the outermost layer of the teeth. It is easily stained but it can be quickly corrected. Your lifestyle is one of the causes of teeth yellowing. As mentioned earlier, smoking and drinking colorful beverages can cause extrinsic tooth discoloration. Smoking is a huge offender because of the tar and nicotine content. These chemicals cause yellowish stains that can appear on the teeth surface. As Dr. Walter say, any drink or food that can cause a stain in your clothes can also cause tooth discoloration.

For that reason, dark-colored foods and drinks must be avoided if you do not want your teeth to discolor. Some fruits and veggies can also stain your teeth as they are high in chromogens. These substances can easily stick to your tooth enamel.

Can Acidic Foods and Drinks Promote Staining?

Unfortunately, they can cause staining. The reason for this is that they erode the enamel. As a result, it becomes easier for the pigments to stick to your teeth. The tannins in wine and tea can also attach easily to the tooth enamel causing staining. However, there is a way to avoid staining your teeth when you drink wine and tea. When you add milk to your tea, for instance, it reduces the chance of tooth discoloration. The reason for this is that the proteins in milk can easily bind to tannin so it will not attach to the enamel.

The good thing is that there are ways to prevent or remove these stains. Since the lack of oral hygiene can cause tooth discoloration, make sure to brush and floss regularly. You must also have regular dental cleanings to prevent plaque buildup that can also cause discoloration.

Whitening Your Yellow Teeth

At Mesa Dental, there are many ways to achieve a whiter smile. You may talk to Dr. Walker Dukes to know about your options on how to brighten your smile and remove your tooth discoloration. Dr. Walker Dukes can also help you remove intrinsic stains. They are stains caused by tetracycline or antibiotics. Furthermore, any trauma to a tooth can cause it’s inside to bleed, leading to intrinsic stains. Unfortunately, most intrinsic stains cannot be removed through teeth whitening procedures. Your best options are veneers and crowns. These dental restorations are all available at Mesa Dental. If your tooth is from internal bleeding, it may require a root canal. From there, Dr. Walter may suggest a whitening procedure. There are so many options now to treat tooth discoloration. However, it is vital first to know what causes teeth yellowing. Once the cause has been determined, the right treatment can be easily identified.

To know the best option for your tooth discoloration, make sure to consult with our cosmetic dentist at Mesa Dental. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Walter Dukes by contacting us at 805-963-1222.