If you’ve ever had red wine or consumed tea, you know these things can stain teeth. While those two things are some of the worst offenders, many other surprising foods and drinks can also stain teeth. We’ll take a look at them below and offer some recommendations to help you combat food stains without giving up all of your favorite treats.

What Causes Stains?

Chromogens are chemicals that give certain items their color. They can also cause tooth stains. Acids wear teeth out. This also increase the odds that you’ll stain your teeth. A good rule of thumb is that if it can stain your clothes, it can also stain your teeth.

Some of the most common foods that stain teeth also have a lot of healthy benefits, so we wouldn’t encourage simply cutting them out altogether. If you consume a lot of any of the following foods and drinks, however, it may be best for you to cut back a bit.

Tea and Coffee

Tannins cause stains. Those tannins are in tea and coffee. Putting milk into that teacup or coffee cup will help reduce the amount of staining that these drinks cause.

Red Wine

It’s fine if you want to drink a glass once in a while. Sadly, however, red wine is a drink that stains teeth.

Cola

The acids and coloring in colas and other dark soft drinks wear your teeth out. Sugary colas are bad for your teeth in more ways than one, as their sugar contents encourage the formation of plaque.

Fruit Juices

Cranberry, blueberry, and grape juices leave stains on teeth.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes give you nutrients. The bad thing is that their pigment also gives your teeth stains. Moderation is key!

Curry

The coloring in curry will result in stains. Avoid using too many brightly colored spices like turmeric if you’re preparing curries yourself.

Soy Sauce

People love this when they stir-fry food. It tastes great, buy soy sauce’s coloring can stain teeth.

Berries

Berries are healthy, but they cause stains. As with everything on this list, moderation is the way to go here.

Sports Drinks

Both energy drinks and sports drinks break down enamel. This is what helps them to causes stains. In addition, energy drinks tend to contain even more acid. That’s another problem.

Sweets and Candy

Chocolate as well as other candies can cause a lot of stains. Hard candy is another culprit because hard candies have dies that will settle on the enamel of teeth. They’re especially dangerous for those of us who can’t resist chomping down.

What Can We Do?

The biggest cause of tooth stains is poor oral hygiene. Here are some things that you can do in order to keep those pearly white teeth white.

Limit the tooth-staining food you eat. Limit the number of drinks that cause stains. Replace that traditional black tea with herbal tea. Perhaps you might want to substitute flavored water, as long as it doesn’t come with its own dies and added acid.

Rinsing with water after you eat or drink something that stains teeth will help.

Try using a straw when you drink cold drinks.

Chew gum that has xylitol in it. That stimulates saliva, which in turn cleans your mouth.

Eat apples. Eat celery. Carrots are good, too. They increase saliva. That’s a natural stain remover.

See your dentist as often as they want you to see them. They can recommend things to help your teeth. They can make suggestions. They can also clean your teeth professionally. They can use professional whiteners as well.

You should brush your teeth right after you drink or eat something that causes stains.

Cutting back on or, better yet, eliminating tobacco products will help you to reduce the number of tooth stains you get. You might need to consult with your doctor about the best way to do this.

You don’t have to quit on your favorite food or drinks. You can still enjoy them and their health benefits as long as you brush after eating, rinse with water and practice good oral hygiene.

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