Causes of Brown Spots on Your Teeth

 In Blog, General Dentistry, Oral Health, Shreveport Dentist, Teeth whitening

causes of brown spots on your teeth - shreveport's dentist Dr. Ben Kacos

Discoloration on the teeth or brown spots is very common. They are also fairly easy to get rid of if you are willing to make some lifestyle changes. The discoloration ranges from yellowish-brown all the way to black-brown. You may have them in some teeth while others don’t, at the same time the size and discoloration may also differ. To understand why brown spots appear, we look at its causes.

Causes of brown spots

There are numerous causes of brown spots which include:

  • Food and drinks: Dark colored foods and drinks such as red wine contain chemicals such as chromogens. The chemical can lead to staining of the enamel. Individuals that consume a lot of food with artificial color and dye who also have poor dental hygiene are more likely to develop brown spots due to the chemicals.
  • Smoking: Cigarettes and other products that contain nicotine and tobacco have particles that end up sticking to the pores in the enamel. Constant exposure to such products leads to brown spots on your teeth.
  • Build up of plaque: Your mouth contains thousands of bacteria which mix with food particles and saliva to form plaque. Usually, with a good oral regimen, you can combat plaque and ensure it doesn’t build up to form tartar or calculus. But once tartar is formed, you cannot remove it unless you get your teeth professionally cleaned.
  • Tooth decay: As plaque and tartar build up it consumes sugar that is passed through the mouth to further weaken the tooth enamel. This exposes the yellowish layer under the enamel making your teeth appear yellowish-brown.
  • Aging: As you age, your enamel starts to degrade and without proper dental care the yellow dentin becomes exposed underneath. This leads to your teeth appearing discolored.
  • Genetics: While there is a general perception that everyone has white teeth, due to genetics some may have darker teeth than others. Genetics also plays a role in how strong your enamel is or how it responds to acids and pigments which can lead to discoloration.
  • Medication: Some medications can also lead to tooth discoloration.

Treating Brown Spots on Your Teeth

According to Dr. Ben Kacos, Shreveport’s Dentist, the best treatment for brown spots can only be determined after the causes of it are known. For example, if your teeth have brown spots due to food and drink, the best possible solution is to limit your consumption of food with dyes and chemicals that cause discoloration. At the same time, you can find numerous different home remedies that can help treat brown spots. We asked our friend, Dr. Chris Green, a dentist in Parker, CO, about treating brown spots on your teeth. Dr. Green suggests:

  • Brushing your teeth with a mixture of water and baking soda once every few days.
  • Rinsing your mouth with a diluted solution of hydrogen peroxide once a day or every few days. Be sure to immediately rinse your mouth with just water after the solution.

You can also find numerous products in the market to help reduce brown spots such as:

  • Mouthwash that has whitening chemicals including hydrogen peroxide
  • Toothpaste that contains sodium hypochlorite
  • Whitening strips

It is important to note that if the discoloration is caused by tartar, you won’t be able to get rid of it on your own. You will need to contact your local dentist for professional teeth cleaning. Your dentist in Shreveport, LA will start by scraping then blasting the tartar and plaque away. Teeth whitening treatment may also be recommended to protect them from decay.

How to Prevent Brown Spots

The best way to prevent brown spots from appearing on your teeth is to maintain good oral hygiene.

You should do the following to ensure that your smile stays bright:

  • Brush twice daily for 2 minutes with fluoride toothpaste
  • Floss at least once a day
  • Rinse mouth with water after eating or brush 30 minutes afterward
  • Use a mouthwash that is fluoride based
  • Get your teeth cleaned by a dentist on a regular basis
  • When drinking beverages, use a straw
  • Stop smoking or using products with nicotine and or tobacco

You should also try and avoid consuming too much of:

  • Foods and drinks that are high on sugar or contain artificial coloring
  • Tea and coffee
  • Dark liquors and red wine
  • Food with dark sauces such as tomato and soy sauces

Consume food that promotes enamel health and can prevent discoloration such as:

  • Vegetables especially spinach, broccoli, and kale
  • Fruits that are high in fiber such as plums, pears, and apples
  • Fermented yogurts and cheese
  • Cereals and whole grains
  • Nuts

Brown Spots Can Lead to Decay

Brown spots on the teeth is usually a result of bad oral hygiene. You mix in smoking and consuming food with dye and chemicals and you increase the chances of the brown spots appearing. The condition may not be severe initially but can lead to decay is caused by plaque and tartar which can lead to a lot of pain and eventually the removal of the tooth, if not treated. Which is why it is important to seek professional help to treat brown spots as soon as they appear.

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