Flucke and Suchman Dentistry Discuss Tooth Discoloration

It has long been said that a person’s smile can reveal a lot about their demeanor. Although that is true, one’s smile can also speak volumes about other things. Take the color of a person’s teeth for example. It may provide clues to a person’s overall health and lifestyle.

There are essentially two major types of tooth discoloration. The first is staining that exists on the surface (extrinsic). It is typically a good indicator of a person’s lifestyle. For example, dark brown stains are common among tobacco product users. Green tints are sometimes found on the teeth of those that use a mouth rinse made with a high degree of copper salt.  

The second type of staining starts below the surface and works its way outward (intrinsic). It tends to reveal information about one’s overall health. For instance, certain disorders and medications can cause discoloration. A few disorders that fall into that category are prophyria, dentin dysplasia, hyperbilirubinemia and epidermolysis bullosa. Colors that may appear in people with those disorders are reddish brown, yellow and yellow-green. The list of medications that may cause tooth discoloration includes, but is not limited to Ciprofloxacin, tetracycline, minocycline and fluoride supplements. The colors associated with them tend to fall in the blue, gray, black and blue-green range.

The good news is that some of the discoloration may be reduced or eliminated with a trip to our dentistry office. Depending on the cause of the discoloration, we may recommend a variety of services. For some people with surface discoloration, a cleaning session and a change in lifestyle may do the trick. For others, teeth whitening and procedures like dental bonding and porcelain veneers may be more in order. To learn more about tooth discoloration and how our dentistry office can help improve your smile, call (816) 525-7373.