Maintaining the Perfect Shade of White: 5 Foods and Beverages That Can Cause Teeth Discoloration

teeth stainHave you ever smiled in the mirror, only to be disappointed by dull, yellowing teeth? Sometimes, it seems like stained teeth can happen overnight! That’s because there are certain foods and drinks which can cause staining very quickly. Others may impact the overall condition of your teeth, making them more susceptible to staining. Here are the five foods and beverages to watch if you want a brilliantly white smile.

1. Soda. Soda is one of the biggest offenders, and it’s the one featured on this list that’s worse for long-term staining. While the caramel color in soda itself may not be the worst for causing stains, the sugar and acid it contains is.

Sugary drinks attract more bacteria to your mouth, which can lead to more staining. Additionally, the acids can wear down at your enamel and make it more porous. This makes your teeth look yellower, as the dentin beneath becomes more visible. The porousness also makes it easier for stains to get trapped on the surface of teeth.

2. Red wine. Are your teeth looking a little grayish? If gray is the issue, rather than yellow, it might be your red wine consumption. Red wine can be very heart healthy in moderation, but it’s rich in tannins that stain teeth. The good news is that red wine might help prevent cavities!

In any case, keep brushing, flossing, and sipping that merlot through a straw.

3. Dark berries. Dark berries like blueberries and blackberries are some of the healthiest fruits we can possibly eat. You see, the darker a fruit or vegetable it is, the richer it is in anthocyanins. These are flavonoids that have strong antioxidant powers, protecting us from disease and premature aging.

However, the dark color means they can also stain your teeth horribly. Don’t stop eating those berries, though; just try whitening your teeth with this.

 4. Coffee. Just like red wine, coffee contains tannins that stain teeth. However, coffee stains can look more yellow or brown, rather than bluish or gray. And despite what you may have heard, adding more milk or creamer doesn’t really help.

Your best course of action if you want to prevent coffee stains is the drink it through a straw, choose cold brew (lower acidity), or rinse your mouth well after each cup.

5. Pasta sauce. Here’s one that surprises a lot of folks when they first hear it. Tomato sauce like that which we enjoy on pasta and pizza can be the secret reason for your yellow teeth. Even ketchup can be to blame.

The combination of acid and the vibrant color is responsible for its staining power. To fix this, you can limit the amount you eat, and always rinse your mouth well afterward.

Should you just brush more often? No, twice a day is still right. As we can see, a lot of staining is caused by acidic foods and drinks. Brushing while there’s acid on your teeth makes the problem even worse, speeding up enamel loss. Instead, choose a whitening solution to lift stains, and keep rinsing well after eating or drinking.

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