What is tooth discoloration?
Color changes may occur in the teeth due to stains on the surfaces of the teeth or due to changes in the tooth structure. Dentists basically divide tooth discoloration into 3 different categories. These categories can be listed as follows;
- Extrinsic coloration; In this form of discoloration, the enamel layer of the tooth becomes colored due to coffee, wine, cola and other colored foods and beverages. Smoking also causes external stains.
- Intrinsic coloration; In this type of coloration, the inner dentin layer of the tooth undergoes a color change. The dentin layer becomes black or yellow. The reasons for this may include excessive fluoride use in childhood and the use of tetracycline antibiotics during pregnancy.
- Age-related discoloration; This form of coloration occurs due to a combination of internal and external factors. Apart from the stains caused by food and smoking, dentin also turns yellow over time. The enamel layer covering the tooth gets thinner over time and dentin becomes visible. Broken teeth or blows to the tooth also cause discoloration of the teeth.
What are tooth discoloration treatments?
Tooth discoloration is usually caused by professional teeth whitening treatment applied to the enamel layer of the tooth. With the method called office-type teeth whitening, namely “Power Bleaching“, dentists use a gel that whitens the tooth in 30 minutes to 45 minutes. This process may take several sessions.
It is possible to whiten teeth at home with the whitening gel recommended by dentists. It should be noted that at-home teeth whitening gels may not be as effective as the whitening gels used by dentists, so the home teeth whitening process may take more time and this process can vary from 3 weeks to 4 weeks. Toothpastes containing whitening can remove minor stains, but are not very effective for many discoloration problems.
If the patient has had root canal treatment and tooth discoloration has occurred afterward, the dentist may use a whitening agent inside the tooth.
In cases where the tooth is broken or the teeth whitening treatment does not work, the dentist may prefer to cover the darkened area of the tooth with a porcelain restoration.
What are the causes of tooth discoloration?
The factors that cause tooth discoloration in the areas that appear on the outer surface of the tooth can be listed as follows;
· Beverages, eg wine,
cigarettes and tobacco products,
· Painted chemical products cling to the tooth surface and cause a change in tooth color.
Poor oral hygiene
Daily eating habits
scaling of plaque
Bacteria and fungi
Tea and coffee consumption
Medicines used to treat certain diseases
Causes such as some diseases cause a change in tooth color.
These colorations, which can be seen in all colors in young people, can usually be seen in adults as brown, gray or black. In such discolorations, it is preferred to apply protective methods as treatment. Abandoning some habits, brushing the teeth regularly, checking the dentist regularly, removing plaque and tartar, and cleaning devices give very good results in this treatment
Daily care is very important to prevent tooth discoloration. The following steps should be followed to prevent tooth discoloration;
It is necessary to brush the teeth twice a day.
Dentists recommend rinsing your mouth with water, etc. after consuming wine, coffee or other foods that may stain your teeth, and recommend brushing your teeth at least 30 minutes after consuming colored foods.
Regular dental cleaning helps prevent surface stains.
Preventive methods may be preferred in young people.
Some habits that cause tooth discoloration should be abandoned.
It is necessary to be examined by the dentist regularly.
Cleaning dental plaque, using dental floss and daily care with mouthwash prevent tooth discoloration.