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How Foods and Drinks Can Lead to Stains and Discoloration Marietta, GA
James A. Merriman DMD, FAGD, PC is now Envision Dental!
Woman with Bright White Smile next to Flower

Did you know that your tooth enamel is extremely porous? If you’re wondering why that matters, you might want to look at the cup of coffee you just consumed or a bowl of fresh berries you’re preparing to eat. It’s no surprise that dentists often see patients who inquire about teeth whitening in Marietta because the dark-colored foods and beverages they consume are causing stains and discoloration to develop on their not-so pearly whites. But how does this happen? Read on to learn more about “tannins” and how they can negatively impact the aesthetics of your smile.

What are Tannins?

When consuming your favorite dark-colored beverage or food, you may wonder what gives it that particular color. The answer is tannins. These organic compounds are found in coffee, soda, wine, soy sauce, and plenty of other pigmented items, giving them their bitter taste and rich color. Not only do they interact with the ingredients found in these foods and drinks (i.e., sugars, starches, proteins), but they also mix with other compounds designed to enhance the color of a product, ultimately causing stains to develop.

When enzymes, sugars, and starches coat the tooth enamel upon consumption, it can lead to tooth decay and cavity formation. Add in tannins, and you’ve got a recipe for stains to set in and cause bright, white teeth to turn yellow and become dull over time.

What You Can Do to Avoid Stains

Does this mean you must give up coffee or your nightly glass of wine? Not necessarily, but if you want to avoid watching your smile lose its luster, you’ll consider adopting these beneficial tips:

  • Using a straw to drink dark-colored beverages, as it will minimize the contact between your tooth enamel and the liquid.
  • Add sugar-free creamer to your coffee or tea, as it can weaken tannins. By choosing a sugar-free option, you can also mitigate the potential for possible tooth decay and cavities.
  • Brush your teeth or rinse your mouth immediately following consumption of your favorite dark-colored beverage or food to help remove tannins and any sugars or starches that can negatively impact your smile.

Inquire about the potential for teeth whitening by your dentist in Marietta. Whether you choose an in-office treatment or take-home whitening kits, you can blast away years of staining and discoloration and enjoy a whiter, brighter smile in less time. Of course, you’ll want to make sure you’re following the other tips provided to ensure your results last as long as possible.

Whiter teeth don’t have to be unattainable these days. By taking the appropriate steps, you can enjoy a brighter, stain-free smile.

Posted on behalf of Envision Dental

130 Vann Street NE Ste #210
Marietta, GA 30060

Phone: (770) 425-0448

Mon - Thur 8AM - 5PM