If you’ve realized that your teeth look dim and stained in photos next to people with seemingly perfect pearly whites, you’re not alone. Common, harmless habits such as drinking coffee or red wine on a regular basis can stain teeth gradually without your awareness until you’re faced with an uncomfortable truth.
Why Do Teeth Turn Yellow?
Teeth change color when substances get into the tooth enamel and build up over time. Different compounds can change teeth different colors, such as gray, brown, and yellow. They can be surface stains, such as those caused by food and drink, as well as internal factors like tooth decay.
What Causes the Discoloration?
There are multiple substances and habits that can lead to tooth discoloration. As mentioned, common culprits are drinks and foods with certain compounds that stain the enamel of teeth, like coffee, soda, and tea. Another top cause of teeth yellowing is smoking, as both the nicotine and tar in cigarettes stick to the teeth and cause discoloration. In addition, more rare causes of discoloration are certain illnesses, tooth decay, and simply not brushing your teeth enough.
Can Discoloration Be Reversed?
In some cases, treating the underlying cause of discoloration with corrective dentistry procedures can help restore a bright appearance to teeth. However, most people benefit from teeth whitening procedures, whether performed in our office or at home, which can erase years of gradual staining and help you get a white smile once again.
How Can My Dentist Help?
Dr. Chern offers Zoom teeth whitening treatments in her NYC office, as well as custom whitening trays to be used at home. These treatments are much more effective than the commercially available whitening strips because they contain a greater amount of hydrogen peroxide, which is the active ingredient that removes stains.
During an appointment, Dr. Chern will examine your teeth and determine the cause of your tooth discoloration and then recommend a treatment to help. In-office teeth bleaching appointments can take about an hour to perform, during which time you can read, watch TV, or listen to music while the whitening gel does its work.
What Are My Next Steps?
The best place to start for any New York City teeth whitening procedure is a consultation with New York dentist Dr. Inna Chern. During an examination, Dr. Chern can recommend a whitening plan that works best for your schedule and budget and will provide expectations for what a professional whitening treatment can do.
By Dr. Inna Chern