Few people have natural pure white teeth; most teeth are in fact slightly yellow. But the degree of yellowness does vary and for some people it can be quite embarrassing.
Yellow or dull coloured teeth can be caused by a number of external or internal factors:
- Poor dental hygiene: Flossing and brushing at least twice a day is essential to remove plaque and stain-producing substances, as well as preventing bad breath and tooth decay.
- Genetics: If your teeth are yellow as a child, it may be due to genetic factors.
- Diet: Consumption of too many fizzy drinks or excessive sugar can remove the outer coating of your teeth. Other culprits are tea and coffee, both of which cause staining.
- Diseases: Yellow teeth can be caused by several diseases that affect enamel and dentin, as well as by treatments like chemotherapy.
- Braces: If you wear braces you must triple your maintenance routine as poor dental care can leave a yellowish tint.
- Smoking and drinking: Nicotine causes discolouration of teeth, as can red wine.
- Trauma: Accidents can affect enamel formation in young children by damaging the internal structure.
- Aging: Yellowish teeth are a natural symptom of aging.
- Drugs: Certain antibiotics or other medications can cause yellow teeth.
How to get rid of yellow teeth
There are several treatment options for yellow teeth, so deciding how to get rid of yours will largely depend on the specific cause, your age, and condition of your teeth. We always aim to provide the least invasive treatment possible to create the optimum outcome.
The simplest method of removing minor surface stains is polishing, or micro-abrasion if staining is more intrinsic. Provided that your discolouration is not due to inadequate enamel exposing the dentin, tooth whitening (bleaching) is often the most effective treatment for yellow stained teeth.
If your teeth are also worn or chipped, the best solution may be composite bonding or porcelain veneers – or a combination of bleaching, bonding and veneers. This is becoming the preferred option for people wanting an instant and noticeable difference in their appearance.