Are you tired of hiding your smile because of yellowing teeth? Despite our best efforts, teeth can often become discoloured due to a variety of factors, such as ageing, genetics, and lifestyle habits like smoking or drinking coffee. Fortunately, there are a number of options available to brighten your teeth and restore your confidence. In this article, we’ll explore what causes teeth to turn yellow, and share tips on how to prevent discoloration.
There is a saying that goes, “A white complexion covers three blemishes, while white teeth add three points to your beauty.” Many women try everything to whiten their skin, but often overlook the significant impact that teeth have on their appearance. Many of the female celebrities we know have transformed from an “ugly duckling” to a “white swan” largely due to a series of teeth whitening treatments.
Why are our teeth gradually turning yellow?
Some common causes of tooth discolouration include the deposition of pigmented substances, including those consumed in daily diets, such as coffee, tea, red wine, soy sauce, or smoking. If proper oral hygiene measures are not taken, such as rinsing the mouth or brushing teeth after consuming these substances, the dark pigments will adhere to the surface of the teeth, leading to gradual yellowing over time.
The intake of tetracycline antibiotics during infancy can lead to “tetracycline-stained teeth,” where the majority of teeth become yellow, grey-brown, or yellow-brown, and their surface becomes rough and dull.
While it may be disconcerting to some, some research has shown that yellowish discoloration of the teeth is a common occurrence among individuals of East Asian heritage. This can be attributed to the inherent characteristics of their teeth, including enamel thickness and translucency. However, there is hope, as research has shown that there is a genetic component to tooth colour, and if parents possess naturally white teeth, their offspring may have a higher likelihood of inheriting the same trait.
As we age, the outer layer of our teeth, known as enamel, becomes thinner and reveals the inner layer, dentin, which naturally has a yellowish colour. Additionally, the accumulation of stains and the natural wear and tear of enamel can contribute to tooth yellowing over time.
How Can I Prevent Teeth Discolouration
While most of us may not be celebrities required to achieve and maintain Hollywood-level teeth whiteness, having a bright smile can significantly enhance one’s overall appearance. To achieve whiter teeth, in addition to regularly brushing and flossing, it is important to pay attention to daily habits that may contribute to discoloration.
Floss your teeth
Incorporating the use of dental floss into your daily routine can greatly enhance your oral hygiene and prevent the buildup of bacteria in hard-to-reach areas that toothbrushes cannot access. It is important to note that using toothpicks is not recommended, as it can increase the risk of gum inflammation, shrinkage, and widen the gaps between teeth.
Rinse your mouth after drinking tea or coffee
Beverages such as coffee, strong tea, and red wine are susceptible to staining teeth. Over time, these drinks can cause teeth to become yellow. Therefore, it is important to rinse your mouth after consuming them.
Reduce the consumption of sugary drinks
Any sugary drinks can promote the growth of bacteria, while carbonated drinks can alter the pH levels in the oral cavity. Therefore, it is recommended to limit the consumption of beverages. One can also minimise the drinks’ contact with the teeth, and use a straw whenever possible.
The negative impact of tobacco use on teeth discoloration is more significant than that of other foods, and the health consequences of smoking are widely known. As such, it is strongly advised to refrain from smoking. Smoking also brings along severe negative impacts on our health. So, it’s best to avoid smoking and live a healthy lifestyle.
Additionally, some whitening techniques that have been widely circulated online, such as brushing with vinegar/lemon juice, rubbing teeth with peanuts, or using homemade orange peel toothpaste, are unreliable.
If the discolouration of teeth is severe, medical intervention is necessary. For deeply stained teeth, porcelain veneers or crowns may be considered. You can also try laser whitening technology offered by Link Dr. to help whiten your teeth. Another option is LED treatment which brings along benefits such as faster results, less sensitivity, and longer lasting power. Our LED treatment is done in partnership with Precious Medical, which costs $S980 per session. You can make an appointment here.
If you’re looking to take care of your general well-being too, Link Doctors can help! We offer customised physical examination packages for each patient. We also have a special men’s health check package, where patients can choose between the “Basic Check” and “Executive Package” options. You can find a comprehensive list of packages we provide here. These packages range from S$150 to S$9,990, depending on individual needs and preferred scale of testing. To see a more detailed list of checkup options click here.