What can I do about the discolouration of my teeth ?

discolouration of teeth

Teeth staining comes from a variety of different sources. Most causes of tooth discoloration fall into two main categories: extrinsic and intrinsic stains. By making a few simple lifestyle changes, you may be able to prevent teeth discoloration.

What causes my teeth to stain?

Extrinsic teeth stains:

These are the stains on the outer surface of the teeth – the enamel.

Neglecting adequate brushing and flossing, and not going for regular dental cleanings can prevent the removal of stain-producing substances and lead to a build-up of plaque on teeth, resulting in discoloration.

Although tooth enamel can be easily stained by the pigmentation in what we consume, these stains can typically be removed or corrected.

Intrinsic teeth stains:

Intrinsic staining of teeth affects the inner layer of the teeth – the dentine- making these stains more difficult to remove.

These stains can become particularly noticeable if the outer layer (enamel) has been worn away too.

Although these stains are harder to remove- it is not impossible. To conceal intrinsic stains a different approach is required such as cosmetic intervention and in some cases in surgery teeth whitening.

Age-related discolouration:

It is also important to note that as we age the dentine layer naturally discolours and the enamel thins. This exposes the natural yellow tone of the dentine even without active damage to the enamel.

How can I change the colour of my teeth?

A clear assessment of the cause of discoloration will allow targeted treatment and the best result will be achieved. By making a few simple lifestyle changes, you may be able to prevent teeth discoloration. For example, if you are a coffee drinker and/or smoker, consider cutting back or quitting altogether. Most patients are satisfied with the colour of their teeth from a simple scale and polish by a dental hygienist- try this before considering more invasive methods.

At Heath Street Dental, we have two options for teeth whitening: supervised home teeth whitening and Enlighten chair-side whitening.

For supervised home whitening, the dentist will supervise you through the process. They will take impressions of your mouth and custom-make whitening trays. We supply your custom-made trays with whitening gel to whiten your teeth at home. The process involves wearing the gel-filled trays for around 1 hour a day. That allows you to whiten your teeth from the comfort of your home in a timeframe that suits you. We will then book you in for a review appointment. This is £229 and uses the Zoom system.

Chair-side whitening, as the name suggests involves having the whitening process carried out in surgery. However, this is also combined with home whitening alongside in the same way as the above. This is £539 and uses the Enlighten system.

If you are concerned with the shade of your teeth, speak with one of our dentists and let us help you smile with confidence.