The Color of Your Teeth and What It Tells About Your Health

by Charlene G. Samoy (This article was first published at South Common Dentist)

Toothpaste and toothbrush commercials sometimes make you envy. You envy those sparkling, snow-white teeth. Sometimes you even wonder if they were real. This is because when you grin in front of a mirror, you don’t see the same teeth from these advertisements.

You need to realize that tooth discoloration reflects some important things about you and about your health. When you don’t have white teeth, you perhaps have one of these reasons for tooth discoloration.

  • Unhealthy habits. When you don’t regularly rinse, brush, or floss your teeth and gums, you will end up with discoloured teeth. Chemicals from the food that you eat and the bacteria that act on the food remnants in your mouth can produce this discoloration.
  • Vices. Smoking or use of tobacco exposes your teeth to substances that tarnish your teeth. Drinking wines and alcoholic beverages also weakens the tooth enamel.
  •  Diet. There are healthy foods that can undergo oxidation when not cleansed immediately from your mouth. This chemical process can cause stain in your teeth. Also, coffee and teas, can make your teeth more discolored.
  • Medications. There are drugs that we take for our health problems, like allergies and high blood pressure, that can cause discoloration. This happens also among children. When we give them strong medicines before they reach the age of eight, these medicines will cause improper growth of their teeth. Medical procedures like radiation and chemotherapy also results to tooth blemishes. Check with your physician whether the medicinal treatment that you are taking will have discoloration effects on your teeth.
  • Aging. Getting old decreases the strength of your enamel. This makes them more susceptible to breakage and the yellow dentin becomes more visible.

What are the results of stained teeth?

This dental problem not only affects the way you look. It also decreases your self-confidence. Smiling is an asset that you can share to those around you. Smiling builds a positive aura which in turn makes you feel more relaxed and stress-free. When you have enough confidence to smile, you can become more effective in whatever endeavor you undertake. That’s how significant those bright, shining white teeth are.

Aside from that, studies show that those with unhealthy teeth and gums suffer more from diseases like heart disease, diabetes, kidney diseases, and for pregnant women, premature birth. Preventing your teeth from suffering these unhealthy results will also keep your whole body fit and strong.

What can you do to prevent or get rid of tooth discoloration?

First, there’s the good habit of brushing your teeth at least twice a day. Have a regular check up with your dentist, that’s at least once every six months. Don’t forget to floss. Use oral rinse or mouth wash that does not contain staining substances.

Second, let go of the bad habits. If you quit smoking and drinking, your gums and teeth become healthier. Your smile becomes fresh and attractive. These unhealthy habits also cause dangerous effects to your body.

Third, use whitening agents. There are toothpastes, gels, whitening strips, and rinses that you can buy from the pharmacy. These over-the-counter products can cause whitening of teeth if you use them as per directions. Better if you can consult your dentist about these products before you use them. There are also whitening agents that are available through your dentist.

Next time you stand in front of the mirror or in front of an audience, don’t shy away. Show the confidence that springs forth from your bright smile and beautifully white teeth.

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