10 Common Causes of Teeth Discoloration to Be Aware Of

Want to know more about teeth discoloration?  It is one among the many well-known factors that lower a person’s self-esteem. In fact, most people especially professionals believe that maintaining pearly white teeth is one way of boosting self-confidence making a person more productive than ever. Bright white teeth are a source of pride as they make you smile and feel more confident while working or relating with your seniors.

Now, while it’s cool to maintain a pearly white smile, have you ever sat down to think about potential causes of teeth discoloration? Well, this issue is becoming increasingly common to most people due to a wide range of factors ranging from poor dental hygiene, old age to eating teeth-staining foods and beverages.

To ensure that your teeth stay whiter, fresher and stronger, this article will highlight 10 key factors that can potentially discolor your teeth.

Poor dental hygiene

Think about this for a moment, it is probably one key factor that can cause teeth discoloration. If you fail to brush or floss regularly (most preferably on a daily basis), then you definitely create a prime environment for bacteria and food particles to stick and cling around. Things like coffee and tobacco are among the key foods and beverages that can easily discolor your teeth if you fail to maintain a clean oral environment.

Certain foods and drinks

We may have fallen in love with certain foods and beverages due to their great taste and vast benefits to our bodies. Now, have you ever sat back to think of the negative side effects these foods and drinks can have on your teeth?

Well, due to the large amount of acidity present in these foods (such as apples, potatoes, cherries, berries, and citrus fruits), your teeth will definitely be at a high risk of discoloring in case you’re not aware of them. In addition to that, various beverages such as tea, soda, sports drinks and wine can also cause teeth discoloration.

For those avid coffee connoisseurs who can’t start their day without taking a fresh cup of coffee, just be aware of the acidity in the coffee you’re taking as it’s enough to cause serious teeth discoloration if you’re not careful.

Tobacco products

Do we have avid tobacco smokers in the house? Well, smoking and chewing tobacco products not only exposes you to certain cancers but it also puts you at a very high risk of contracting gum diseases and other oral issues such as yellowing of your teeth and discoloration.

So, the next time you smoke or chew tobacco, apart from enjoying the throat hit effect most smokers crave for, always be aware of the oral health dangers you’re exposing your teeth into.


Did you know that there are certain medications that can cause tooth discoloration? Yes, certain medication such as antihistamines and antipsychotic drugs can easily cause teeth staining. Parents exposing their children to antibiotics tetracycline or doxycycline before the age of 8 years might also suffer from a tooth stain effect.

Other medical treatments such as taking drugs to manage high blood pressure, chemotherapy or even head and neck radiation can also cause a mild or severe tooth discoloration. Finally, if you’re the person who believes in the ritual of performing oral rinses before kick-starting a day, beware of those oral rinses that contain chlorhexidine or cetylpyridium chloride as they can easily stain your teeth.


As you advance in age, the outer layer of the enamel slowly thins or wears down leading to an exposure of the inner layer of the tooth which is the dentin. Since the dentin is yellowish in color, your teeth will generally start to stain out as more dentin gets exposed. In case you experience such problems, always consult your dentist to know which measures you’re supposed to take.


When it comes to maintaining brighter whiter teeth, some people tend to be lucky than others. You see, genetics plays a big role in thickening and brightening of your teeth. For those experiencing genetic variances, this issue can easily affect enamel porosity later resulting to staining or yellowing of your teeth.


Another major cause of tooth discoloration is trauma. If your child’s dental formation is compromised due to traumatic accidents, there’s a high chance of suffering from tooth discoloration in the future.

What happens is that traumatic accidents tend to disrupt enamel formation preventing it from full development as it’s supposed to. This problem leads to an exposure of the colored dentin causing your teeth to appear yellowish.

Certain illnesses

Did you know that certain medical conditions can cause teeth discoloration? Yes indeed. Medical conditions such as calcium deficiency, liver diseases, rickets and metabolic illnesses can affect the enamel and the dentin leading to tooth discoloration.

In addition to that, a variety of treatments for certain health conditions have been discovered to contribute hugely to teeth staining such as head and neck radiation and chemotherapy. Finally, pregnant mothers suffering from certain infections have a high risk of exposing their infants to teeth discoloration.

Dental materials

If you’re not aware of this, you better know that certain dental materials such as amalgam fillings/restorations and teeth braces can easily discolor your teeth if you’re not careful. Sometimes, metal braces can discolor your teeth and in other cases, bacteria can build-up around the brace brackets causing teeth discoloration.

To avoid this, ensure that you brush and floss more regularly to deny bacteria a prime environment. Alternatively, you can opt to choose invisible (removable) braces that will definitely make it easier to brush your teeth.

Speaking of tooth fillings, amalgam is the most popular tooth restoration option due to its low cost and durability. Since amalgam fillings are made from a mixture of zinc, copper, mercury, silver and tin, the metal fillings have a tendency of corroding your teeth resulting to teeth discoloration.

To avoid this, most people are being advised to consider composite filling which is made from non-corrosive materials such as glass, quartz, lithium aluminum silicate and organic polymer BIS-GMA.


Finally, environmental causes such as exposure to water with high levels of fluoride can easily lead to teeth discoloration. In addition to that, excessive use of certain toothpaste, mouthwashes and rinses with high amounts of fluoride applications can also result to mild or severe teeth discoloration.


Although some factors such as old age, illnesses and genetic issues can’t be controlled, other factors that can be avoided such as smoking tobacco and taking too much coffee should either be cut down or quitted altogether.

To avoid teeth discoloration and promote pearly white teeth, you need to maintain high oral hygiene which includes brushing and flossing your teeth on a daily basis. Through doing this, you’ll always lower dentist trips while maintaining white pearly and strong teeth which result to self-confidence.