Is your smile no longer as bright as it used to be? You need to understand that it is easy to stain your teeth if you smoke, eat and drink certain things. In time, all these habits will have an impact on your teeth. But what are the things you should avoid to maintain a pearly white smile? In this article, you will learn about the foods and habits that can stain your teeth.

What stains your teeth?

The exterior of your teeth is called the enamel. It is a hard layer made from minerals, and it has the role of protecting your teeth from bacteria and acids. But in time, the enamel can get stained through tiny cracks and crevices. But if you want to maintain a bright smile you should avoid three things:

Tannins – a plant-based compound that makes the stains stick to the enamel.

Chromogens — a compound with an intense pigment that adheres to enamel.

Acids – the acids make the tooth protective layer (enamel) softer and rougher. This makes it much easier for the stains to set in.

Tea or Coffee?

The right answer is WATER! You may think that the reason most Americans suffer from tooth stains is coffee. But in reality, even though most Americans drink coffee every day in the morning, the beverage that can ruin your smile is tea. More than 50% of Americans drink tea every day. Not only it is full of acids, but it also has tannins. Tea can stain your teeth much more than coffee, and it does not matter if it’s iced or brewed tea.

What are you drinking?

It is said that one glass of red wine a day keeps the heart attack away. This may be true, but red wine is extremely dangerous for your smile. It is very acidic and contains a lot of tannins. In addition to this, based on its purple color, it is high in chromogens.  White wine is not as dangerous as the red wine, but it is just as acidic, and it still has some tannins. Furthermore, people like to drink wine mixed with soda or juices, which are more acid. This bad habit erodes the enamel layer and makes the teeth more vulnerable to staining.

Food dye and soft drinks

Did you ever eat a lollipop that colored your tongue and teeth blue? These are the effects of food dye. Dentists suggest you avoid eating brightly colored candy and sweetened drinks. Sports drinks are some of the worst beverages. They are not only full of sugars and acids but the way you drink it will make it come in close contact with your teeth.

People who drink cola will observe that in time their teeth will turn yellow. This is because sodas are extremely acidic and dark sodas contain chromogens. Clear sodas are just as dangerous because they contain lemon-lime flavors which include acids. But if you still want to consume acidic beverages, better drink using a straw.

The best way of maintaining a white and bright smile is to avoid all the acidic foods and beverages. In addition to this, you should practice an excellent oral cleaning (brushing twice a day with fluoridated toothpaste) and visit the dentist periodically. There are also whitening kits you can use to whiten your smile, but never use them before getting yourself checked by a dentist. If you have an open cavity and the bleach from the whitening kit enters it, it will hurt you really bad. Ask your dentist for more information about what foods and drinks to avoid in order not to stain your teeth.