You have probably heard to stay away from drinks like cola, coffee, and tea because they can stain your teeth. Most think that the color of these drinks is a leading factor in teeth staining, but that is only partly the truth. A large factor of these drinks staining your teeth has nothing to do with their color and more to do with the other substances they are made with.
How Your Teeth Get Stained
All of these drinks are highly acidic, and this property is part of what gives them power to stain teeth. Highly acidic substances are not good for your oral health for many reasons, but one reason to stay away from them, or at least use them in moderation, is because the acid in them can wear away the enamel on the surface of your teeth.
While the acid itself is not doing the staining, when it takes away the tooth’s enamel, it can make your teeth more prone to stains from other foods. This is not only a problem because it is impossible for the body to regenerate damaged enamel, but also because it exposes the layer underneath the enamel known as dentin. Dentin by itself is typically colored white or off-white, but when it is exposed, it can get stained just like your enamel.
Tannins in drinks are the biggest cause of stains. These can be found in many drinks, especially drinks like teas. While they can be found in coffee as well, coffee isn’t a clear drink. Just imagine the staining power of coffee, found in a clear beverage, and you can imagine the staining power of tea.
If you would like to ask us any questions regarding other foods or drinks that have the potential to stain your teeth, stop by our office and we can help you.