In this blog post, we discuss foods and beverages that can discolor and stain teeth. We also reveal how you can improve the color of your smile at Red Oak Family Dentistry, your cosmetic dentist in McKinney, TX!
- Coffee & Tea
- Soda & Juice
- Citrus Fruits
- Tomatoes & Tomato Sauce
Coffee and tea contain plant compounds called tannins that can stick to teeth and gradually cause stains. Dark coffees and black tea have the most staining potential of all the different types of these hot beverages. Plus, if you add sugar, honey, syrup, or creamer, you increase your risk of tooth decay and cavities.
Can’t survive without your daily dose of caffeine? Try rinsing your mouth with water afterward, chewing sugar-free gum, and limiting sugary additives.
Red wine contains pigment-producing substances called chromogens, as well as tannins. These bind to your teeth, causing stains. Red and white wine are also acidic. Their low pH can thin the enamel on your teeth, which exposes the underlying yellow dentin and increases your risk of tooth decay and cavities.
If possible, limit your consumption of wine and rinse your mouth with water afterward.
Sugar-filled drinks, like soda and juice, increase your risk of tooth decay. These beverages can also contain acids and dyes that can damage and discolor enamel.
Whenever possible, drink water instead of soda (even if it’s diet soda) and eat whole fruit instead of drinking fruit juice. And when you do drink juice, make sure it is 100% real fruit juice with no added sugar.
Citrus fruits contain citric acid, which can gradually damage your enamel. Weakened enamel makes you more susceptible to tooth decay, cavities, sensitive teeth, and discoloration.
But don’t eliminate citrus from your diet! Citrus contains vitamin C, a nutrient that is critical for healthy body functioning and tissue repair. When you do enjoy a citrus fruit or glass of orange juice, pair it with a glass of water to help rinse your teeth.
Tomatoes contain richly-colored pigment and acid, a combination that increases your risk of staining.
However, don’t avoid tomatoes in the name of a whiter smile! Tomatoes contain essential nutrients, such as vitamin C and vitamin A. These vitamins help keep your gums healthy and strong and prevent dry mouth. Tomatoes also contain a powerful antioxidant called lycopene, which reduces a man’s risk of prostate cancer.
How to Prevent Stains
A balanced diet can still cause stains on your teeth because many healthy foods contain pigment and acid. To keep your smile looking and feeling healthy, be sure to:
- Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time
- Floss every day
- Drink plenty of water
- Avoid tobacco products
- Visit us for routine cleanings and checkups
Professional Whitening in McKinney, TX
We also invite you to up the wattage on your smile with professional teeth whitening at Red Oak Family Dentistry! In addition to professional teeth whitening, we offer a variety of cosmetic dental services to improve the appearance of your smile. Contact us today to schedule your cosmetic consultation!