What are the black spots on teeth? Get insights on the causes, how to remove and prevention mechanism.
What Causes Black Spots on Tooth
When our teeth are not the normal whitish or yellowish whitish color, they are said to be discolored. Black spots can occur anywhere on your teeth – be it on the front or at the back. They are caused by the erosion of the enamel on the teeth. These spot can be as tiny as a pen mark or big enough to cover a lot of the tooth surface.
Black spots on teeth may worry you, but there’s plenty ways you can go to fix them. Tooth decay caused by tartar can produce these black spots when your oral care is not quite up to the cleaning standard, and certain medical conditions can do so as well. Whatever the reason for your discoloration, your dentist or dental hygienist can offer a solution based on the cause.
It wound be a surprise if you find that you have other dental condition when a black spot are on your tooth. For instance you may find or notice your gums bleed more often when you have black spots on tooth.
Causes of Black Spots on Tooth
It is essential to find out what is causing the black spots. This will help you address the problem accordingly. The following are some of the factors:
- Sugary food and drinking and carbonated beverages
Not only can sugary beverages like soda leave your teeth with block spots, they also make them vulnerable to decay, this type of beverage can cause an unsightly yellow tint to your teeth, which may make you too embarrassed to smile freely.
Staining from soda is mainly caused by two substances, phosphoric acid and chromogens. Phosphoric acid is added to soda for flavoring purposes. Although this ingredient is largely responsible for the flavor of soda as we know it, phosphoric acid weakens your tooth enamel that is a protective layer on the surface of your tooth.
Weakened enamel is more susceptible to the black spots on tooth and stain causing ingredients of various foods and beverages.
Chromogens give cola its color. Chromogens stain your teeth. When your tooth enamel has been eaten away by phosphoric acid, chromogens can easily cause a yellow, dingy tooth appearance.
- Smoking Tobacco
Nicotine and tar are the two culprits in regard to tobacco stains on teeth. When tobacco is inhaled or placed in the mouth, nicotine and tar settle into the oral cavity. These substances are able to leach their way into microscopic openings in our enamel, resulting in black spots on tooth and yellow/brown discoloration of the tooth surface.
It is no secret that tobacco use is bad for your health. It is a commonly accepted fact that prolonged exposure to tobacco can cause a multitude of health problems and, in serious cases, fatal disease. What some people fail to realize is how tobacco cause negatively affects to their oral health.
Whether it is cigarettes, chewing tobacco, cigars or pipes, tobacco use wreaks havoc on your mouth in more ways than one. Aside from having tobacco stains on your teeth tobacco use will result in bad breath, gum disease, tooth loss and, more seriously, mouth cancer.
Quitting smoking is easier said than done, and it can become less satisfying when the stubborn yellow/brown tobacco stains linger on your teeth long after you have kicked the habit.
- Tea or coffee
As a general rule, if a liquid can stain fabric, it can stain your teeth as well. What is more, while the overall health benefits of tea are generally undisputed, there’s actually evidence to suggest it may ultimately stain your teeth more than a traditional cup of Joe.
Despite the fact that your dark roast may appear to have more color than say, black tea, through naturally occurring tannins and processes such as oxidation, teas can really take to teeth, potentially leaving you with black spots on teeth.
How to Prevent Black Spots on Tooth
- You can prevent teeth stains from soda by:
- Reducing or eliminating the beverage from your diet.
- Using a straw to prevent contact between the soda and your teeth.
- Thoroughly rinsing your mouth with water after drinking soda.
- Drinking soda within a short period of time and then rinsing, instead of sipping slowly over an extended period of time.
- Teeth whitening by bleaching away these stains
- Prevent black spots on tooth caused by tobacco smocking
- The most obvious way to prevent tobacco smocking black spots on tooth from occurring is to quit smoking, or never start in the first place.
- Maintaining a good oral hygiene routine by brushing at least twice a day, flossing each night before brushing and using an antiseptic mouthwash can help to prevent heavy staining and tar build-up, but it will not completely protect your teeth from discoloration caused by tobacco use.
- If you are unable to brush after each tobacco exposure, rinse thoroughly with water to remove as many harmful substances from your mouth as possible.
- It is important to visit your dentist for regular check-ups. Not only will the cleaning remove the stains, but your dentist and/or hygienist will do a thorough examination of all your oral tissues to ensure your tobacco use has not caused more serious problems.
- How to clear black spots on tooth stained by tea and coffee
If you cannot give up on tea or coffee altogether is simply out of the question, I do have a few suggestions which can help mitigate hard to remove stains.
- Swish a glass of water around your mouth after ingesting a cup of tea or coffee
- Brew light coffee and add a small amount of cream or milk
- Change out your black tea bags for green or white tea
- Floss daily to remove plaque stains along your tooth’s edge
- Use a bit of baking soda and salt to lift surface stains, then rinse with hydrogen peroxide twice a week
- Brush with whitening toothpaste immediately after you finish the cup to keep stains from setting.
Note -Ultimately, I want to stress that, despite the potential for pesky stains, drinking tea is good for you. For example, Green tea contains the chemical compound fluoride which has been show to substantially strengthen teeth. It has been shown to kill bad breath causing bacteria and viruses in the mouth.
However, if in the end, you’re still uncomfortable with your smile after these preventive care measures, make an appointment to see a dentist if having your teeth bleached by a dentist is a good next step.
Brown Spots on Teeth Reasons
Brown spots on the teeth occur when teeth get stained and they can be extremely embarrassing and can affect your smiles, self confidence and overall health. Apart from aesthetic reasons, it is important to get rid of brown spots and other stains for they could impact your health in many other ways.
What Causes Brown spots On Teeth?
There are two main categories of causes of brown spots on teeth
- Internal reasons
- external reasons
Either way, finding out the cause and treating it is important.
Brown spots on teeth are a sign of tooth decay, which develops from snacking on sugary and starchy foods in excess. Beverages that are high in sugar do the same, creating plaque that sticks to the tooth surface and damaging it over time. If the plaque isn’t removed by regular brushing, it destroys the enamel and turns it brown. These brown spots may also come from the dentin underneath, which has a naturally darker shade when exposed by worn enamel.
When plaque builds up on teeth it hardens into a substance called tartar, which is often a brown color. Tartar often appears at the line between the teeth and gums, and regular brushing with toothpaste doesn’t remove it.
Fluorosis is caused by excessive fluoride intake, and in severe cases brown pits will appear on the teeth. Too much fluoride in the body, especially in kids whose teeth are still forming in the gum, discolors the tooth enamel. Permanent white lines or streaks often indicate mild fluorosis, whereas brown, gray or black patches and pits on top of an irregular tooth surface represent signs of more serious fluorosis. Although the teeth may look damaged, fluorosis is in fact only a cosmetic condition. Unless the teeth are decayed from another cause, they’re perfectly healthy.
- Celiac Disease:
According to the celiac disease awareness campaign, the tooth enamel of those who have Celiac disease is often poorly developed. White, yellow and brown spots or bands may appear, and the enamel may be translucent. Because the effects are permanent, sufferers frequently opt for restorations to cover the condition.
Other Medical Conditions
High fevers and dental traumas can cause brown marks on teeth, and, albeit rarely, developmental conditions of the bones and skull have the same effect.
Prevention and Treatment
- For the long-term prevention of brown spots due to tooth decay and tartar, brush your teeth twice a day with thorough toothpaste such as, floss once a day and don’t eat sugary foods or snacks to tide you over between meals.
- Only a dentist can fix brown spots on teeth from decay. To do so, he or she removes the decayed area and replaces it with a filling. Keep in mind you can ask your dentist for white fillings that match your natural tooth color.
- A dentist or dental hygienist can remove tartar by scraping it away with special tools, and cleans and polishes the tooth enamel to perfect the final appearance.
- Brown spotting from fluorosis and Celiac disease is permanent and isn’t improved by whitening toothpastes or treatments. Removing the affected area isn’t appropriate if there’s no decay, but your dentist can cover stained teeth with veneers. Thin shells that cover the teeth, veneers can be matched to your natural tooth color.
Note-If your teeth have brown spots, ask your dentist for a checkup. The earlier the cause is found, the better the outcome for your oral health. Whether brown spots are due to decay, tartar or another condition, your dentist can help restore your confidence and your smile.
Home Remedies for Brown Spots on tooth
Opting for professional treatment or taking matters in your own hands depends on the results desired, time at hand and cost. Natural home remedies with a myriad of benefits are milder, inexpensive but could take longer.
1. Teeth Whitening Pens
Whitening pens or brushes contain hydrogen peroxide smeared on to the surface of teeth. Once painted on black spots to tooth the solution is left on for 20 – 30 minutes.
After which it binds into a film that lasts for a certain amount of time.
This technique is good to treat individual teeth that have brown spots. It can be painted on as required to avoid the gums.
2. Whitening toothpaste
Whitening toothpaste can be effective in eliminating brown spots caused by caffeine and cigarettes. They contain chemicals and abrasives that can disperse these stains.
It can take around a month to make teeth appear whiter, if used twice a day. Toothpastes that contain ‘blue covarine’ can have a speedier whitening effect.
Note-Whitening toothpaste can’t change the natural color of teeth. It should be used with caution as it can weaken enamel.
2. Teeth whitening strips
Teeth whitening strips are a tray-free, convenient method, effective in displaying results. Most strips recommend a strip for 30 minutes a day for around 10 – 20 days.
It can also be done twice a day to speed up results.
These strips are transparent, fine and flexible layers of plastic that have been treated on one side with hydrogen peroxide. This enables effective whitening and reduces the chances of side effects.
Higher the strength of hydrogen peroxide and the longer the strip is worn the more effective in treating brown spots on tooth.
Black spots on Tooth no pain
This type of discoloration can be caused by too much exposure to fluoride, trauma or bruising of a tooth, or from some antibiotics such as tetracycline.
Brown spots on tooth near Gums
Healthy gums are firm, and cover the roots of the teeth. Usually the lower two thirds of a tooth are very much buried in the jaw bone.
Receding gums is a loss of gum tissue leading to the exposure of the roots of the teeth. Gum recession is a problem that might begin in the teens, but is very common in older adults. Gum recession is normally a progressive disorder that occurs day-by-day over several years.
This is why is very common over the age of 50. Most of the people do not notice that they have gum recession because it happens so slowly.
Many people don’t understand how to clean teeth properly leading to brown spots on teeth. Dentists may not have also been taught the most effective brushing technique in dental school (as proper teeth cleaning is very effective and reduces profitable dental problems).
Incorrect brushing or even flossing makes the bacteria to build up between the teeth and in the sulcus. Sulcular bacteria form the colonies and are the main reason for the development of gum disease and tooth decay.
Plaque is a soft, colorless biofilm that is formed by the mouth bacteria. If not removed, it tends to harden after a number of days and form calculus (tartar). Tartar is usually calcified mineral deposits on the teeth. It usually tends to stain much easily, and is visible as the brown or even the yellow stains on the teeth. It might also accumulate under the edges of the gums.
The most common bacteria that is associated with gum disease is porphyromonas gingivalis. An infection of the gums may lead to a chronic inflammatory response, which might contribute to the hardening and also narrowing of arteries (atherosclerosis), and a variety of other diseases depending on the individual.
Most of the doctors don’t make the connection between the periodontal disease and other chronic ailments, so they continue for several years.
How to get Rid of Black Spots on Tooth
Black spots on tooth can be removed using professional and at-home teeth whitening systems.
Various treatment solutions and whitening options at a dental hygienist can work on brown spots. Brown spots are largely extrinsic stains and in office procedures would take the form of polishing or teeth whitening treatments.
- Dental Prophylaxis
Extrinsic stains are commonly cleaned through a dental prophylaxis treatment.
Prophylaxis has a dual action that cleans surface stains from teeth and protects teeth and gums from further damage or disease.
Scaling – If there is minimal inflammation, the dental hygienist will start with scaling the teeth with an ultrasonic scaler to remove hardened plaque.
After this, a manual scalar is used to remove debris from in between the teeth.
Polishing – A prophy paste is then applied to thoroughly polish off superficial stains.
This technique is effective in treating stains and spots caused by tobacco, tea, coffee and other colored food.
- Power Bleaching
Power bleaching uses a mix of hydrogen peroxide and bleaching gels to knock of stains and brighten teeth.
Bleaches can cause varying degrees of irritation, which is why the gums and mouth are separated using a protective ‘dental – dam’.
The technique then uses light to expedite teeth whitening. In this method, a whitening gel is applied on the teeth and a laser or led light is passed over it. This special light activates the whitening gel and quickly removes brown spots. A 30-60 minute session can offer very dramatic results, lightening teeth by 3-4 shades.
- Porcelain veneers and composite bonding
For darker or persistent extrinsic stains, alternative options are recommended. Porcelain veneers and composite bonding are options that cover the teeth and mask cosmetic flaws.
Bonding is a good method to use when you have black spots on tooth. This method uses a composite resin on existing teeth and can cover stains and give you a natural smile. These require frequent cleaning – at least 4 times a year – since they can stain easily.
- Porcelain veneers
Porcelain veneers are a preference to cover up stains and fix gaps in teeth. They’re a long-term solution and could be expensive. They consist of layers of many thin porcelain shells adhered to underlying tooth structure.
Veneers are made based on personal preferences and characteristics, to ensure a natural result. A minimal level of the tooth enamel is scraped off and the whole procedure might require a couple of sessions.
Porcelain veneers are newer techniques to hide stains. This is similar to bonding but uses porcelain laminated veneers on teeth that is more durable and does not stain very easily. It is more expensive when compared to bonding.
- Composite bonding
This could last anywhere from 3 – 10 years. Composite veneers hide spots and stains in teeth with plastic resin, bound to fillers such as quartz and glass then fixed to the enamel.
They’re made with the help of a shade chart that ranges in colors and translucencies.The procedure is reversible, as underlying tooth structure remains untouched.
- Three Tips For Preventing Teeth Stains From Braces: http://www.colgate.com/en/us/oc/oral-health/cosmetic-dentistry/teeth-whitening/article/how-to-prevent-stained-teeth-from-braces-0116
- How to Get Rid of Brown Spots on Teeth: http://www.livestrong.com/article/164350-how-to-get-rid-of-brown-spots-on-teeth/
- Dental care: https://www.dentalcare.com
- Daily Tips for Good Oral Hygiene: www.knowyourteeth.com/infobites/abc/article/?abc=d&iid=184&aid=3806
- Baby Tooth Care: https://www.babycenter.com/0_how-to-care-for-your-babys-gums-and-emerging-teet.