Having yellow teeth can be very upsetting. If your teeth are not as white as they used to be, you may hide your smile, which can have a surprising impact on your day-to-day outlook. Research has shown that people who make a conscious decision to smile more often feel happier. Because our facial expressions are capable of affecting our moods and outlooks, it’s important that we feel comfortable smiling freely so that we can enjoy a better quality of life. However, yellow teeth can be a major obstacle to cracking that first smile, so it’s important to know what makes teeth yellow. Your Lake Forest cosmetic dentist, Dr. James Fondriest, discusses the causes of yellowing teeth.
What Causes Yellow Teeth?
Teeth yellow when enamel erodes. When this happens, the layer beneath, called dentin, becomes visible. Dentin naturally has a yellower color than enamel, so the more the enamel erodes, the yellower the tooth becomes. But what causes enamel to erode? Acidic foods and beverages are a major cause of enamel erosion because the enamel has difficulty standing up to prolonged exposure to acids. Foods and drinks that are high in sugar are another contributor to enamel loss. Sugar is a favorite snack of bacteria, and when they chow down, they produce an acid capable of eroding enamel.
Other causes of yellow teeth include the following:
- Drinking coffee or other beverages containing dark pigments. Coffee and soda often cause yellowing because they are dark in color and acidic. Teeth with weakened enamel become less resistant to the dark pigment, resulting in stains.
- Age. Some enamel loss is the result of age. As enamel wears away, teeth appear yellower.
- Smoking. The nicotine and tar found in cigarettes stains teeth.
Whiten Your Teeth with Your Lake Forest Dentist
Do your yellow teeth keep you from smiling? Schedule a visit with your Lake Forest cosmetic dentist to discuss teeth whitening options by calling 847-234-0517. Our office welcomes patients from Lake Forest and North Shore suburbs of Chicago.