Foods and drinks that can stain your teeth

Your favorite food, drink, or fruit may be performing more functions than providing nutrients and calories to your diet.

Usually, foods that are highly pigmented and overly acidic can cause teeth stains over time.

Some foods and drinks contain chromogens which are chemical compounds that give intense color, and after constant consumption, cause stains to the teeth. Another component capable of causing teeth stains is tannin, a pigmented substance present in some foods and drinks.

Local dentist Dr. Miller is your go-to for every teeth discoloration issue, considering that different foods and drinks can increase the chances of teeth stains. If proper care is not taken, the stains can become permanent.

Generally, anything that can stain your clothes or tongue will probably stain your teeth. Keep reading to discover the most common tooth-staining foods.

• Red wine

Red wine contains acids that can expose the teeth' pores, which causes the enamel surface area to increase, giving room for colors in the foods and drinks to become lodged on the surface of the teeth.

• Coffee

Another drink that contributes to teeth stains could be your daily morning brew. Coffee is rich in tannin, a chemical compound also referred to as polyphenol, and it can cause the brown residue from coffee to become etched on your enamel.

• Tea

Just like coffee, tea also contains tannin, which is also a culprit of teeth stains. However, with tea, you can limit the impact of tannin. The addition of milk into tea can help to reduce the effect of tannin significantly.

• Berries & Juices

Berries such as blueberries, pomegranates, blackberries, and other dark berries contain a dark colorant that can cause stains to the teeth.

The tiny particles of pigments from these berries can infiltrate the pores of your tooth enamel and stay glued. For those with higher teeth porosity, this will cause persistent stains. This explains why your teeth and tongue have purple stains after eating some berries.

Just like intensely pigmented fruits, dark juices such as grape, cranberry, blueberry, and beets are also capable of staining your teeth.

• Cola

Constantly sipping on dark colas can also contribute to teeth darkening. This results from the acids contained in soda which can wash away the top layer of your enamel.

When an enamel erosion occurs, it exposes the teeth to teeth-staining components, and it also exposes the dentin of the tooth, which is a dark color beyond the enamel.

• Energy drinks

Energy and sports drinks also aid the roughness of the enamel, which exposes it to stains. Considering how high energy drinks are in acidity, they are a significant component of enamel dissolution.

• Tomato sauces

To maintain your white teeth, it is imperative to exercise caution when consuming foods that contain tomatoes. Tomato-based sauces, such as the one you have on pasta and pizza, contain a high level of acid which weakens your teeth' enamel.

However, rinsing your mouth after every tomato meal will go a long way in reducing the effects of the harmful acids.

• Balsamic Vinegar & Soy sauce

Balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, and other dark-pigmented sauces are also known as intense teeth stainers. The high acids in these foods can break down the enamel, making it open to stains.

In basic terms, any sauce that can stain a linen napkin can stain your teeth.

• Candies and treats

Sweets and treats, especially ones with dark pigments like chocolate, can also cause stains to your teeth. In addition, sticky candies also remain on your teeth long after chewing them, and the dyes contained in these candies can also affect your teeth'' color.

• Tobacco

Tobacco products such as cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, or pipes can also cause stains to the teeth.

Tobacco products typically contain some chemical compounds which have dark pigments, and after some time, the teeth take on the colors from the tobacco products.

Tar is commonly found in tobacco products, and considering how dark it is, you can tell how badly it affects the teeth' color. Though nicotine is clear in color, it gives the teeth a yellow tone when exposed to oxygen.

• Specific medication

Stains on the teeth can also result from certain medications such as tetracycline antibiotics, especially when consumed by children under seven.

The effect of tetracycline on kids' teeth weakens the deposition of calcium while the adult teeth are growing.

Conclusion

 Foods and drinks that contain tannins, high acids, or dark pigments can cause discoloration to your teeth or stains over time.

Fortunately, you don't have to eliminate your favorite foods and drinks from your diet to keep your teeth in good shape.

By maintaining a simple dental routine like brushing your teeth after meals, cleansing your mouth with water, and keeping up with your dentist's appointment, you can rest assured that your teeth will remain white and shiny.

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