Tooth Discolorations | Extrinsic and Intrinsic Types

Do you have tooth discoloration?

Does your smile appear dull or discolored? Did you know that stains and discoloration can involve both the external parts of your teeth and internal tooth structures? Understanding the cause of tooth discoloration is an important part of assessing your oral health and improving the appearance of your smile. Some types of permanent stains indicate oral health problems within the interior structures of your teeth. Other causes of discoloration may be due to lifestyle choices or the aging process. Dr. James Fondriest, a talented general and cosmetic dentist, addresses both extrinsic and intrinsic tooth discoloration effective treatments.

Extrinsic Stains

Some surface stains temporarily cause discoloration. Proper oral hygiene and routine visits to our Chicago dentist office for professional cleanings will remove temporary surface stains. For patients whose teeth are permanently stained, store bought whitening products are normally ineffective. Permanent stains on the extrinsic structures of teeth are most commonly caused by using tobacco, aging, and consuming dark foods and beverages. Coffee, tea, wine, berries, and juice permanently stain teeth over time. Particles from these foods and beverages collect on tooth enamel. Our team addresses extrinsic stains with prescription strength teeth whitening systems.

Intrinsic Stains

In many cases, intrinsic surface stains are caused by damage to the interior structures of teeth. A tooth may darken from fracture, root canal infection, extensive decay, or exposed dentin. Intrinsic stains may also be caused by excess use of fluoride or enamel damage.  Dr. Fondriest will determine the underlying causes of intrinsic stains with a comprehensive oral examination. He will then recommend the proper course of treatment for your specific needs.

To ask questions or schedule an appointment, contact Lake Forest Dental Arts at (847) 234-0517. We serve patients from all the neighboring Chicago communities.