Physical Health, Tips & Techniques, Wellness / Self-Care

2 types of Teeth stains explained, and how to whiten them

Hello, pearly whites.

words by: Natasha Marsh
Aug 21, 2022

As I indulge in coffee after coffee, wine after wine, I’ve been thinking a lot about my teeth. Mainly about how hard it is to keep them white when I love pigmented food and beverages. Fortunately, after researching oral hygiene tips for whiter teeth, I’ve found the key to success is actually a lot simpler than I thought. Yes, you should brush your teeth twice a day and floss for good measure.


But unless you’re brushing with a whitening toothpaste, chances are, all your efforts are in vain. Why? Because all you really need is one good whitening solution to help reverse all the stains your teeth have encountered. And no, this does not have to cost an arm and a leg, but some in-depth knowledge about what ingredients to look out for.


Types of stains

First, let’s start with the 2 types of stains: Intrinsic and extrinsic.


Intrinsic focuses on the enamel stains, the ones inside the tooth that typically pop up due to genetics, age, or other issues. The easiest way to combat them is to see your dentist for a professional cleaning, or invest in a hydrogen peroxide at-home remedy.


Extrinsic stains are the ones that can easily be manipulated and sit on the surface of the tooth, caused from highly pigmented foods and drinks. Think of red wine, coke, coffee, tea, tobacco, blueberries, and strawberries. If they are not addressed rather quickly, they can become worse.


But luckily, with the help of hydroxyapatite, the natural occurring mineral responsible for tooth enamel, dentin, and cementum, you can achieve clean and fresh breath while simultaneously whitening teeth. It’s the ingredient responsible for the strength of your teeth in that it assists with enamel restoration and remineralizing.


What to search for

You can also search a label for phrases like: ‘Enamel safe,’ ‘fights plaque,’ ‘cavity protection,’ and ‘reduces mouth bacteria’. The main goals are to repair enamel and continue production to prevent stains. We would also be wrong not to discuss the toothbrush you should select as well. The American Dental Association recommends using a soft bristle toothbrush for 2 minutes brushing each section of your month: Top left and right, and bottom left and right for 30 seconds each.


You could also use a sonic toothbrush that vibrates and deeply (but gently) brushes each section for you, taking out the guesswork.


Here’s how to safely whiten teeth at home.


Photo via iStock