Do Teeth Stains Mean Your Teeth Are in Danger?

woman with embarrassed smileTooth sensitivity may be among the most diverse signs of dental trouble, and can indicate anything from a developing dental disease (cavities or gum disease) to structural tooth damage. Teeth stains, however, are perhaps the most common source of dental concern, and can occur from something as simple as eating and drinking. When your teeth are stained or discolored, their appearance can make your smile seem as though it’s in serious trouble, but not all stains indicate an immediate need for restorative dental treatment. In fact, quite often, teeth stains are just teeth stains, and can be erased with a simple, unobtrusive teeth whitening procedure.

Different Kinds of Teeth Stains

The outer layer of your teeth, called tooth enamel, is semi-translucent, allowing you to see the white tooth structure, or dentin, underneath it. The most common form of teeth stains occur on or just underneath tooth enamel, and are known as extrinsic (external) stains. When one or more teeth begin changing color from within the dentin, the discoloration is considered intrinsic, or internal, staining. Extrinsic stains are typically cosmetic and can be addressed with a teeth whitening procedure. By contrast, intrinsic teeth stains are often the result of an underlying dental or medical issue, and can require more involved treatment to correct.

How Can You Know for Sure?

Because of the different natures of teeth stains, Dr. Pizzi advises consulting with him or Dr. Messina before opting for an over-the-counter teeth whitening product. If your stains are from within the tooth, then the bleaching agent won’t work, which might prompt you to overuse the treatment and damage your teeth in the process. By choosing a professional teeth whitening option, you’ll allow your dentist to thoroughly inspect and diagnose your teeth stains, and recommend an appropriate cosmetic treatment to improve your teeth’s appearance.

ABOUT YOUR SHREWSBURY COSMETIC DENTISTS:

At Modern Dentistry, Todd A. Pizzi, DDS, and Luciana Messina, DDS, are dedicated to providing high-quality cosmetic, restorative, and preventive dentistry services to patients and families in Shrewsbury, Worcester, North and South Grafton, Westborough, Southborough, Northborough, Boylston, Hopkinton, Millbury, and all surrounding communities. To schedule your next appointment, contact our office by calling (508) 842-6356 today.