What To Do With a Gray Tooth?

Tooth Discoloration

Tooth discoloration can be caused by both internal and external factors. Learn what is causing yours and how to treat it! Do you have a gray tooth and are not sure how to restore it to its former white brilliance? A discolored tooth is more than a cosmetic concern.  A discolored tooth can be a sign of tooth decay, tooth injury, or tooth death. It can also be a sign of a nutritional deficiency that needs to be addressed.  Whatever the reason, we can help you diagnose the cause and treat the gray tooth so that your white, balanced smile is restored.


What Causes Tooth Discoloration?

Do you have a tooth that is discolored? Knowing why your tooth is discoloring can help you prevent it and treat it. Tooth discoloration is not something to ignore. It isn’t just a cosmetic concern. A graying or discolored tooth can be a sign of tooth distress. Teeth become discolored by internal or external factors. Sometimes both. External tooth discoloration results from the tooth enamel becoming stained from something that has come in contact with your teeth. This is typically something like coffee, soda, berries, or wine. Tobacco products can also stain your teeth. Internal factors that cause tooth discoloration are more serious.  They can result from trauma to the tooth or pulp damage. Some tooth discoloration can result from exposure to too much fluoride during early childhood or certain antibiotics. Age can also affect the color of your teeth. The dentin of your teeth naturally yellows over time requiring more effort on your part to keep your smile white. Teeth are more apt to stain from foods and tobacco as you age as well. Contact your dentist for an exam to discover what is causing your tooth/teeth to discolor so you can treat the condition and learn how to prevent it in the future.


How to Treat Tooth Discoloration

Tooth discoloration can usually be removed with a professional, in-office cleaning or whitening treatment. Some stains are permanent and will require on-going whitening treatments. If teeth do not respond to teeth whitening or power-bleaching treatments, your next best option to restore the white brilliance of your smile is a crown or veneer over the tooth. Crowns and veneers come in all shades to blend with the natural color of your surrounding teeth. Veneers are carefully fitted around the natural shape of your teeth to keep the integrity of your smile intact.

Prevent Tooth Discoloration with These Tips

One of the best ways to combat tooth discoloration is to take active steps to prevent the condition from occurring in the first place. Consider creating the following positive habits to protect your smile:

  • Rinse your mouth with water after consuming drinks or foods that stain (coffee, wine, berries, etc.)
  • Plan regular cleanings with your hygienist to remove surface stains
  • Brush your teeth after every meal
  • Treat tooth decay early to remove diseased portions and preserve the healthy pulp and prevent graying
  • Avoid getting too much fluoride when you are young. (Once tooth enamel is formed, fluoride will not discolor teeth, but in those formative years it can.


Teeth Whitening and Veneers for Tooth Discoloration

Restoring your natural white smile is a priority for our Family and Cosmetic Dentistry of the Rockies dental whitening team. We can provide a variety of options for whitening your smile that won’t damage your enamel.  Teeth whitening services are growing in popularity, and it’s one of the most requested services offered by our practice. Everyone sees the growing consumer market focused on whiter teeth. Dental veneers may be a good solution for you if the surface of your teeth is damaged or badly stained.  A very thin layer of porcelain is cemented permanently to the surface of the tooth, which creates a smooth and pearly white finish. Investing in a few of these durable porcelain shells is the best way to permanently improve a smile marred by chips, uneven gaps, or serious staining.


Call for a Tooth Discoloration Consultation

If you’d like to know more about your tooth discoloration issue, or find out about treatment options, we can help. Call our Fort Collins office today at (970) 223-6101 to schedule the treatment you need for a whiter, more brilliant smile. For your convenience, you can also reach us after regular business hours by submitting a contact or appointment request online using the form below.