While there are drinks and foods that whiten teeth, there are also lots of them that do the opposite.
So to help you keep your smile as bright as possible, here are ten foods and drinks that can stain your teeth if you consume them too much.
So what are the foods that stain your teeth? Well, here are a handful of them that you should cut back on or avoid altogether if you’re concerned about discolored teeth.
Tomato sauce is a big culprit when it comes to stained teeth. The problem is the acid in tomatoes.
Even though they have plenty of healthy nutrients, tomatoes and tomato sauce can erode your tooth enamel, which then exposes the yellow-colored layer underneath called dentin.
Even Indian food is so delicious, the curry that’s often in it can stain your teeth. Curry has a very deep pigmentation, meaning it can discolor your teeth.
So foods with curry in it should be a special treat rather than a regular meal.
Berries, Grapes & Pomegranates
Berries, grapes, and pomegranates are very tasty, but unfortunately, their hues can be bad news. They can stain your teeth if you eat them regularly.
We’re not saying you shouldn’t ever eat these fruits again, but when you do, try rinsing with water and brushing your teeth after 1 hour. This will help lessen their discoloring effect.
As nutritious as beets are, they can seriously stain your teeth. Again, we’re not discouraging the consumption of a healthy food, we just recommend you brush your teeth right after you eat it.
Pro tip: if you pair acidic foods like beets with cheese, it may reduce the amount of acids in your mouth.
Sweets & Candies & Popsicles
Lollipops and hard candies are delicious, but they might be one of the worst things you can eat -- for your teeth, at least. They’re sticky, meaning they can easily get lodged in between teeth and cause bacteria to grow.
Untreated bacteria buildup can lead to tooth decay. So if you have a sweet tooth, try something less sticky and hard like a low-sugar chocolate.
Drinks, too, can stain your teeth. Some of these you may know about, but some may surprise you.
Tea & Coffee
Many Americans consider coffee (or tea) a necessity, just as they would food or shelter. Whatever your opinion is on coffee and/or tea, both are teeth-staining drinks. Both contain tannins , a acidic polyphenol, that discolors your teeth.
Both energy drinks and sports drinks have a lot of acid and sugar, two things that are stain-causing agents.
If you rely on these because you’re an athlete, rinse your mouth with water afterward. (You could also drink them through a straw, but that would look pretty reidiculous).
Any wine lover will tell you there are benefits of alcohol and wine specifically, but red wine can also stain your teeth.
One thing that can help is eating some almonds along with your glass of wine -- the simple act of chewing a crunchy snack like nuts can help scrub off plaque from teeth and encourage saliva production.
Soda, whether diet or not, has plenty of sugar and acid to discolor the enamel of your teeth. If you want a bubbly drink but don’t want to stain your teeth, try seltzer water instead.
Cranberry & cherry juice
Fruit juices like cranberry or cherry juice have lots of acid, so every gulp is potentially staining your smile.
If you drink these juices through a straw, they’ll have less contact with your teeth, but water is always a better drink choice.
How To Keep a Beautiful Smile?
There are plenty of things you can do to combat the staining effects of these foods and drinks. Here’s a short list of tips to get you started:
- With drinks, use a straw as that will lessen the direct contact of the drink with your teeth
- Eat crunchy, healthy snacks, like almonds, apples, or carrots
- Don’t hold drinks or foods in your mouth for longer than necessary
- Brush 2-3 times per day
- Floss every day, especially after meals
- Visit your dentist on a regular basis
Another very effective thing you can do is get an at-home teeth whitening kit. Our kits have custom trays for your teeth, so they’re guaranteed to fit any mouth. You can pick your kit on our website.
As far as taking care of your mouth, you can find more tips here.