Types of teeth discoloration:
There are two types of teeth discoloration: extrinsic and intrinsic. As name suggests, extrinsic teeth discoloration is caused by external factors like aging, drinking and smoking. The discoloration or dirt is on the teeth enamel, meaning the original teeth are fine, and merely by removing the dirt, the teeth will be back to normal. Mild extrinsic stains can be easily removed by simple dental processes like brushing your teeth or prophylactic dental cleaning. However, if the stains are tough, you may need other more powerful treatments like teeth bleaching. If not treated on time, these stains can get deep-routed into your teeth and thus creating a permanent stain.
Intrinsic stains on the other hand, are the stains that happen from within your teeth. Some of the reasons include: exposure to tetracycline and other minerals during the formation of teeth. If your diet is rich in fluoride then also you can have discolored teeth.
Key causes of teeth discoloration:
There are different causes of teeth discoloration; here we are listing a few of them.
Age: As one age, their teeth start becoming discolored due to the wear and tear and regular food stains. This is natural due to aging. But, dentists recommend that with proper oral hygiene one can maintain color of teeth for longer.
Genetic characteristics of teeth: Teeth discoloration can also happen due to genetics and become deeper with age. Like thin translucent teeth easily get discolored.
Eating, smoking and drinking habits: There are a number of foods that affect the color of your teeth, when taken in excessive amounts. Some of these food items include: coffee, carrots, red wine and other strong beverages and foods. Fruits that are high on citric acid contents also cause discoloration. Smoking is one more reason for teeth discoloration.
Teeth whitening solutions:
There are several tooth whitening solutions available for discolored teeth. The whitening technique used depends on the extent of the stains. Some of the teeth whitening techniques include:
Peroxide gel: The gel is usually applied by an experienced dentist. The gel is applied three times in every 20 minutes and during the process; the gums must be protected by a rubber dam. In case of stubborn stains, the process must be repeated a few times.
Take home whitening kits: These kits are simple to use and give great results on consistent usage. The kit has peroxide gel, but in a more diluted form. It is applied with the help of customized bleaching trays, same as a sportsman mouth guard. The tray remains on your teeth for almost one hour.
Over the counter bleaching: These are the cheapest treatment for teeth whitening. The teeth whitening kits are easily available over the counter at number of pharmacies. As compared to other techniques, it is much slower. It is recommended only for people with light extrinsic stains.