If you have a tooth that starts looking dark, your first thought might be that you’re not brushing it well enough. So you brush it more. You might even go out and buy a toothpaste that says it will whiten your teeth. But you might be doing more harm than good.
Modern American diets are high in acidic pH foods and drinks. (Water and milk are the only two beverages that are not considered acidic. Common other sources of acids are citrus fruits and vinegar—either alone or mixed into things like salad dressing.) This acid softens your tooth enamel. When you brush teeth with softened enamel, you wear away some of the enamel. The more you brush it, the more of your enamel you wear away. The toothpaste you use may cause your enamel to wear away more quickly, especially if you choose one that is abrasive.
As your tooth enamel gets thinner, your dentin, which is darker in color, will show more. At this point, brushing your tooth will not make it whiter or lighter in color. In fact, the more you brush it, the darker it is likely to get. If your tooth color bothers you, see your dentist to see what you can do to change the tooth color.
You can learn more about many dental conditions in the Patient Education section of www.drjrobb.com
Dr. Jennifer Robb is a general dentist who sees patients of all ages. She is currently accepting new patients at her office at 1612 Cooper Foster Park Rd., Lorain, OH. Call 440-960-1940! You can find more information about Dr. Robb at www.drjrobb.com or find Dr. Robb on Facebook at www.facebook.com/DrJenniferRobb