One of the most popular treatments I offer is porcelain veneers for my San Diego-area patients, and one of the main reasons for that treatment is because people want a fix for their stained teeth. Most people know that coffee and soda can darken and eat away at tooth enamel over the years, but there are also several other common offenders that you may not have realized are to blame, including:
- Wine: It makes sense that red wine would stain teeth, but studies have shown that even white wine can cause problems because of its tannic acid, which harms enamel and makes it more vulnerable to stains from other sources.
- Tea: Tea actually stains teeth even more aggressively than coffee, again because of tannins that break down enamel. Green and white teas are less likely to tint teeth, though.
- Sports drinks: Many people don’t realize that sports drinks are often full of acids that erode and damage tooth enamel.
- Sauces: Soy sauce, ketchup and tomato sauces, and other dark-colored sauces have major staining potential.
- Sweets: Most dentists agree that if a sweet treat such as an ice pop, sucker, or sugary candy can turn your tongue and lips a funny color, then your teeth will be affected, too.
If you decide to indulge in these foods and drinks, be sure to brush your teeth afterward or, at the least, rinse your mouth thoroughly with water. If your teeth have already been stained and the enamel damaged, you may be a good candidate for porcelain veneers. Talk to a qualified cosmetic dentist about your options.