11 Habits That Are Staining Your Teeth

Written by , BA Hons Indrani Karmakar BA Hons linkedin_icon Experience: 2.5 years

Who doesn’t like flashing a perfect smile! But, depending on how well you maintain those pearly whites, it can make or break you. Even though we try to do regular brushing, flossing, and mouthwash, the first appearance of tooth stains takes all your confidence away. No matter how well you dress, a yellow smile will bother you all along. You must have heard that drinking coffee regularly leads to tooth stains, but is that all? No Siri! We at Stylecraze decided to crack why teeth stain and how to get them all white again.

1. Holding Food And Drinks In Your Mouth

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Are you in the habit of keeping food in your mouth long after you chew them? The longer the food stays in your mouth, the chances of having your teeth stained doubles. Even drinks that have excess sugar in them affects the enamel of your teeth and turns them yellow.

Pro Tip: Try to drink your beverages with a straw (paper one, not plastic) as it reduces the contact between your teeth and the drink.

2. Adding Berries To Your Diet

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Even though fresh berries have ample health benefits, they are surprisingly infamous for causing tooth stains. Munching them in salads, pies and cakes will only increase the risk of cavities and tooth stains.

Pro Tip: Even though dark berries cause stains, strawberries have an impressive teeth whitening effect. Now you know what toppings to choose for your pie!

3. You Skip On Iced Tea

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While sugary soda drinks break through your enamel, iced tea does just the opposite. Iced teas contain malic acid, which have bleaching properties (1). It increases saliva production, which is the natural way of fighting tooth decay and stain.

4. You Swim Frequently

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There is no harm in swimming, it is the chlorinated water that causes the problem. If your workout regime dictates that you spend over six hours a week in a chlorinated pool, you may be staining your teeth unintentionally. No one likes to drink the pool water, but face it, it does make its way in! Even though chlorine is essential to keep bacteria at bay, it can weaken your enamel and turn them yellow and brown.

5. You Use A Mouthwash

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This may come off as a surprise to you as mouthwash should give you fresh breath and confidence, but did you read the ingredient label before buying it? Some of the ingredients can react with compounds in food and dull your teeth (2).

Pro Tip: If you absolutely cannot live without using a mouthwash, go for products that don’t contain eucalyptol ingredients or chlorhexidine and limit the use to once a day.

6. You Use A Hard Toothbrush

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Your teeth are no metal vase that will get shinier with vigorous rubbing. Brushing your teeth violently can wear your dental enamel and cause stains. This might even make your teeth more susceptible to decay and sensitivity.

Pro Tip: You must choose a soft bristle brush and replace it once every three months.

7.You Use Certain Spices

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Flavoring your food definitely adds aromas to your dishes, but you may want to keep the
spices in check if you like keeping your teeth white. Some pigments tint more like curry, can stain your teeth and turn them yellowish brown.

Pro Tip: We understand how painful spice-less food can be. Instead of giving up on them, you can add herbs that flavor your meal and improve dental health, like thyme, turmeric, and cinnamon.

8. You Are Extremely Stressed

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People under pressure often resort to habits like grinding their teeth to relieve the tension. However, doing it regularly can cause potential damage to your teeth. Not only does it give you jaw pain and a headache, but it can also weaken the enamel making your teeth brittle and yellow.

9. Teeth-Staining Beverages

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Of all the drinks in the world that damage your enamel, coffee ranks first! We know living without coffee is hard, but the dark pigments called chromogens degrade the surface of your teeth and darken the enamel over time (3). So, if you still cannot keep your coffee mug away from you, we suggest you rinse your mouth with water each time you drink coffee.

10. Acidic Beverages

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If you feel drinking white wine won’t stain your teeth like red wine, think again. Acid from white wine can weaken your teeth enamel and make it more prone to staining. Any drink, including carbonated water, contains acid and pigments that ruin the coating of your teeth if consumed regularly.

11. Smoking

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Not that smoking has any health benefits, but it does ruin your smile. Nicotine is the biggest contributor to stained and discolored teeth. Each time a person inhales, the smoke surrounds the entire mouth and coats your teeth in its chemicals. As a result, smokers traditionally have yellow and brown teeth from long-term use. It can lead to bad breath, increased plaque and tartar, gum diseases and even tooth loss.

If you do none of these but want to maintain white teeth, drink a lot of water. It will flush the staining agents before it affects your teeth. So, are you guilty of any of these practices? Let us know in the comments below!

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Indrani Karmakar

Indrani KarmakarSenior Social Writer

Indrani is a writer and artist who likes to add a dash of humor to everything she does. She has two years of experience in writing articles across beauty, health, and lifestyle genres. After graduating in Political Science from Calcutta University, she took a detour into the world of creativity and discovered her knack for social writing, advertising, designing, and...read full bio

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