What Stains Your Teeth? 10 Things You Should Avoid

what stains your teeth

A smile is a person’s best accessory and makes you more approachable. We smile to express ourselves and to communicate with others.

As smiling is such a large part of anyone’s day, it is important to keep your teeth healthy. This includes maintaining the natural clean white color.

Want to keep your smile as white as possible? Find yourself asking what stains your teeth? Read below for 10 things you should definitely avoid.

1. Coffee

Are you someone who can’t start the day until they have some caffeine? You aren’t alone, but know that drinking coffee can significantly stain your teeth.

Coffee contains tannins that cause the stains and discoloration. Because coffee is also acidic, it affects your mouth’s pH levels. This means the future food you eat may damage your teeth more than they normally would.

If you can’t give your morning joe up, try drinking coffee with to-do lids. They will decrease some of the acidity. Another helpful tip is to drink lots of water after having your daily coffee.

2. Red Wines

Dark red wines are what stains your teeth very easily. Red wine can often leave a gray or reddish tint stain. These are unfortunately harder to remove than yellow stains caused by coffee.

As in coffee, red wine also is high in tannins that result in the stains. Wine can also sometimes dry your mouth out and make your teeth sticky. Both things will contribute to staining.

3. White Wine

Some people believe they are in the clear if they only drink white wine. Sadly all you Sauvignon blanc lovers are still susceptible to teeth staining. White wine is very acidic and thus compromises your enamel.

One study even concluded that white wine contributed to darker stains due to the damaging acid contents.

Other things to keep in mind is that while alcohol leads to staining, it can also lead to gum disease.

4. Sweets

Still wondering what stains your teeth? Everyone knows sweet treats aren’t the healthiest for us, yet many don’t realize how harmful they are especially to our teeth.

The sugar found in candy and cookies stick on your teeth and become food for bacteria in your mouth.

When the bacteria feed on this sugar, they release acid. As previously mentioned, acidic material is extremely harmful to teeth. In addition to staining, acid can contribute to tooth decay.

5. Blueberries and Blackberries

Blueberries and blackberries are full of antioxidants. But their dark color can cause unwanted staining. Because berries are so pigmented, they can stain anything.

These and other berries such as raspberries and cranberries can cause staining regardless of how you eat them. This means eating them whole, drinking a juice, or spreading jam on toast all can cause staining.

A helpful rule to remember is that if a food is difficult to remove from clothing, it will also be hard to remove a stain from your teeth.

6. Soda

Similar to sugary snacks, soda is a top answer when asking what stains your teeth. The sugar in soda will stick to your teeth and feed harmful bacteria.

Drinking soda is also bad for your teeth because of the carbonation. Carbonation equals acid and so will also lead to holes and weak spots in your teeth.

Think you are safe with sugar-free options? Unfortunately, the carbonation will be just as harmful to your teeth and contribute to stains.

7. Citrus

One of the clearest examples of an acidic food would be lemons and limes. As with berries, they are full of good nutrients but can be very damaging to your teeth.

The acid found in these foods can erode the enamel which is the protective layer of your teeth. As this erodes, the yellow tinted dentin underneath may show more. This is one factor that contributes to yellow stains.

8. Tea

Many people love a hot cup of tea in the mornings or evenings. Some people even switch to tea when trying to decrease their coffee consumption.

But surprise, tea also contains the tannins that stain your teeth. Even more, tea can cause a variety of stain colors.

Green teeth can leave gray stains while black teas will usually leave a yellow stain. Lower quality tea will cause more serious stains.

If you can’t stop drinking tea, don’t worry. Just like what is suggested for coffee, try drinking tea using to-go lids. Adding milk to your tea is also a good idea as it decrease’s the ability to leave stains.

9. Poor Nutrition

Another answer to the “What stains your teeth” questions is a poor diet. If you want to keep your smile white and bright, make sure you are eating plenty of healthy food.

Proper nutrition is important because it will help your gums and teeth stay strong. Keeping your mouth healthy is one of the best prevention methods you can take.

In addition to a healthy diet, consider incorporating a whitening toothpaste into your routine. This will help keep serious staining away and reverse any minor stains.

10. Smoking

One huge non-food cause of teeth staining is smoking. Whether you smoke cigarettes or cigars, you are likely to experience teeth yellowing. Brown stains are also common.

This happens from the nicotine and tar that are present in these products. Interestingly enough, nicotine does not have a color until it mixes with oxygen.

People have moved towards electronic cigarettes. These usually use juice that is infused with nicotine, so they can also stain your teeth.

Smokers sometimes have a few teeth that will be much darker than others due to how they inhale.

When saliva mixes with chewing tobacco, it creates a dark brown material that can cause significant staining. Because this chewing tobacco liquid usually rests against teeth for a long time, it tends to create severe staining.

Now You Know What Stains Your Teeth

You now know ten key things to avoid in order to keep your teeth healthy. By avoiding these things in excess and ensuring proper brushing habits, you will be able to maintain the appearance of your smile.

However, if you already are experiencing staining, that’s okay. Please contact us and we can provide some whitening options for returning your bright smile.