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Americans work hard to appear attractive, probably because a smile is so important to making a good first impression. In fact, more than a billion dollars are spent every year to whiten their teeth. But, did you know that in-store whitening kits don’t always give you the desired results. Unfortunately, this is because not all teeth whitening kits can work on every type of stain. To get the best results, we recommend visiting your dentist. But, in the meantime, we’re happy to offer you a few suggestions on how you can have your ideal smile.

There are two main types of stains: extrinsic and intrinsic. Extrinsic stains appear on your enamel, the transparent outer layer of your teeth. Fortunately, these stains can usually be removed by a simple whitening procedure. This type of stain is usually caused by:

  • Foods: Highly pigmented foods like berries or candy can stain your teeth.
  • Drinks: Coffees, colas, and teas may darken your teeth.
  • Tobacco: Smoking or chewing can also stain your smile. This can happen regardless of whether you use cigarettes, a pipe, or chew the tobacco.

The other type of stain is intrinsic. This typically is a stain affecting the inner layer (or layers) of your teeth, which are visible because your enamel is clear. This type of staining can be the result of:

  • Fluorosis: This is a condition caused by an overexposure to fluoride at an early age.
  • Trauma: If you hit your tooth, or experience some kind of trauma, your tooth could die and darken. Similarly, if your tooth is injured, it could bleed and darken your smile.
  • Medications: Many medications can darken your teeth.

Unfortunately, typical bleaching procedures won’t usually remove these stains. However, a dentist could offer solutions such as crowns, veneers, or bonding. Based on your unique circumstances, your dentist could offer other solutions as well.

To learn more about what you can do to brighten your smile, please feel free to contact us today. We are excited to hear from you.