Clifton News

9 Surprising Factors that Contribute to Tooth Stains - What to Know

Teeth stains are a drag for most people as it can get in the way of a confident smile. Fortunately, getting into its root and cause can lead you to understand how these occur. Once you know the common culprits behind the yellow splashes on your set of pearls, avoiding a stained smile becomes easier.  

What are the Factors that Contribute to Tooth Stain?

1. Food & Beverages

Drinks like coffee, tea, colas, wines, several fruits, and even some vegetables such as potatoes and apples because there are three common substances that are the usual suspects behind tooth stain: chromogens, tannins, and acids.

These compounds are responsible for creating the optimal condition where stains can stick to the tooth enamel, especially dark drinks that have high acidic properties.

2. Poor Dental Hygiene

The inadequate practice of brushing, flossing, and rinsing may cause discoloration. Fortunately, you can easily remove stain-producing substances and plaques with an antiseptic mouthwash in between meals.

3. Dental Materials

While the field of dentistry specializes in dental hygiene, some materials used in practice such as dental amalgams(especially those that contain silver-sulfide), may cause a gray-black discoloration.

4. Diseases

Certain diseases and treatments affect the enamel and the dentin, which then leads to tooth discoloration. Chemotherapy and head and neck radiation are just some of the procedures that affect tooth color. Even pregnant women with certain infections can affect their infant’s enamel development.

5. Medications

Some antibiotics, particularly the Tetracycline and Doxycycline, affect the tooth color of children under the age of eight.Also, mouthwashes containing chlorhexidine and cetylpyridinium chloride may cause stains. Antihistamines such as Benadryl, antipsychotic drugs, and high blood pressure medications, can also possibly cause teeth discoloration.

6. Aging  

There’s an outer layer of enamel on our teeth that can get worn away as people age, which then reveals the natural yellow tint of the dentin.

7. Genetics

Naturally, some people have brighter or thicker enamel, therefore, decreasing the exposure of their dentin’s yellow tint.

8. Environmental Factors

Fluoride is commonly available for ingestion therefore its excessive use or intake may cause teeth discoloration. These are usually found in rinses, kinds of toothpaste, and supplements.

9. Trauma

Some incidents may cause a natural discoloration on the teeth. For instance, damage from a fall can affect the formation of developing teeth on children; this may also occur for adults.

While there are tons of options naturally available to effectively treat strains, it’s always about keeping your teeth healthy through consistent and proper oral hygiene. This includes toothbrushing twice daily, flossing daily, regular dentist visits at least twice a year, and limited consumption of teeth-staining food and beverages.


No matter the cause or type of tooth discoloration you may have, there’s an available safe over-the-counter teeth whitening products. You can tap into regular whitening maintenance to keep your teeth whiter and brighter as an oral makeover for discolored teeth.

Don’t hesitate to ask your dentist for recommendations on which products to use especially for age-related tooth discoloration. If you are looking for a local dentist in Clifton to help you whiten your teeth, get in touch with us today to see how we can help.