Tobacco stains on the teeth come from the use of tobacco products, such as cigarettes, cigars and snuff. The stains occur whether tobacco is chewed or smoked. They are yellow, brown or black stains seen on the teeth and gums.
Tobacco causes stains on the teeth in the following ways:
– Tobacco contains tar (from the burning of tobacco when it is smoked) and nicotine. Nicotine causes yellow or brown stains. Tar blackens the teeth and gums.
– Tobacco use increases the bacteria in the mouth that form plaque. When plaque is not removed by brushing, it hardens to form Tartar. tartar cannot be removed by brushing and is easily stained by tobacco.
People who smoke or chew tobacco heavily have more stains on their teeth than those who are light users. Poor oral hygiene greatly promotes teeth staining by increasing the amount of tartar, which can be stained by tobacco.
How to Remove Tobacco Stains From Your Teeth
Now that you know how and why they occur, the following can help you remove tobacco stains:
Brush Regularly: It is very important that you brush your teeth regularly if you smoke. Not doing so leads to the formation of plaque and tartar on your teeth. Brushing regularly means brushing at least twice a day – in the morning and at night – for 2-3 minutes.
Floss Regularly: Flossing reaches areas where regular brushing does not normally reach. These areas include between your teeth and near the gum-line. Tobacco users often find that they still develop stains around those areas because plaque and tartar occur there despite brushing.
Use Special Toothpastes: To prevent the formation of plaque, you could brush your teeth using tartar-control toothpastes. There are also toothpastes designed specifically for smokers called “smokers’ toothpastes”. These are more abrasive than regular toothpaste and should not be used more than 2 or 3 times weekly.
Use Tooth-Whitening Products: These are a variety of products for home use that come in different forms, such as gels or strips. They can help lighten the stains on your teeth.
Visit Your Dentist Regularly: Your dentist or hygienist is the most qualified person to give advice about dental and oral hygiene issues. It is best to also consult a professional for more instructions about all the other steps listed above. For example, special toothpastes and tooth-whitening products should be recommended by a dentist. Also, once tartar has formed on your teeth, only your dentist can remove it. Dentists can also carry out tooth whitening procedures that cannot be done at home.
Quit The Use of Tobacco: All the measures to help get rid of tobacco stains from your teeth will be mostly useless if the root cause, which is tobacco, is not removed.
“Tobacco Effects,” MaxillofacialCenter.com.
“What is Tartar?” Colgate.com.
“Smoking and Oral Health Frequently Asked Questions,” British Dental Health Foundation.
“8 Home Remedies for Whiter Teeth,” Discovery Health.