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Are you one of the many Americans who are unhappy with their smile? Have you tried teeth whitening, either from your dentist or from home? If you have, you’re far from alone. In fact, teeth whitening is one of the most common procedures. While your dentist can help, do you ever wonder what you can do to keep your teeth white on your own? To help you answer this question, we’re happy to discuss a few of the most common reasons your teeth could lose their luster.

There are two main types of stains: extrinsic and intrinsic. Extrinsic stains appear on your enamel, the transparent outer layer of your teeth. Fortunately, these stains can usually be removed by a simple whitening procedure. This type of stain is usually caused by:

  • Foods: Highly pigmented foods like berries or candy can stain your teeth.
  • Drinks: Coffees, colas, and teas may darken your teeth.
  • Tobacco: Smoking or chewing can also stain your smile. This can happen regardless of whether you use cigarettes, a pipe, or chew the tobacco.

Unfortunately, not all stains are on the outer layer of your smile. This means that bleaching solutions don’t always work. The outer layer of your smile is clear, meaning that stains on the inside of your smile are still visible. Luckily, even though professional teeth whitening probably won’t work, there are still several things a dentist can do to help you.

  • Fluorosis: This is a condition caused by an overexposure to fluoride at an early age.
  • Trauma: If you hit your tooth, or experience some kind of trauma, your tooth could die and darken. Similarly, if your tooth is injured, it could bleed and darken your smile.
  • Medications: Many medications can darken your teeth.

To learn more about what you can do to brighten your smile, please feel free to contact us today. We are excited to hear from you.