Lessons from your San Diego Cosmetic Dentist: Coffee and Teeth Stains

Pearly white teeth are an advantage when socializing in the eighth most populous city in the United States. However, while getting the services of a reliable San Diego cosmetic dentist could help you keep them professionally whitened, the everyday things you do could still inadvertently discolor your ivories. For one, coffee might be perking up your day, but it also could very well be darkening it.

Why Does Coffee Stain Your Teeth

Your Teeth’s Enamel

To understand how coffee (or any substance, for that matter) stains your teeth, you should first know about your dental enamel. This refers to your teeth’s outermost covering, which is translucent–and instead of being smooth, actually contains microscopic ridges and pits that could catch color pigments from the things you eat or drink.

Coffee and Saliva

Normally, when these pigments stick to your teeth’s enamel, they could still be removed when saliva washes through the surface. Hence, the lack of enough saliva could lead to problems, as freelance writer and eHow.com contributor Noelle Carver noted:

Without enough saliva production to rinse the mouth, the coffee color left in the teeth leaves a nasty brown or yellow stain. According to the American Dental Association, saliva is like a bloodstream to the mouth. Like blood for the body, saliva in the mouth builds and manages the healthy mouth, including teeth and gums. Saliva naturally removes waste products, rinsing the mouth from acquiring microbial invasions that cause staining.


Another common reason why stains stick to your teeth and cause discoloration in need of professional whitening is the presence of dental plaque. Plaque is sticky bacteria that can cause tooth decay or cavities if not treated. It also allows stain pigments to adhere to your teeth surface more readily.


Of course, the most obvious way to prevent having a ”coffee smile” is to abstain from drinking it in the first place. If you couldn’t do this, however, you can always start by rinsing your mouth immediately after you finish a cup. You can also get effective professional whitening from cosmetic dental practices like that of Ali Fakhimi, DMD.

Reliable San Diego cosmetic dentistry practices such as Soft Touch Dental might be able to whiten your teeth every now and again, but practicing good oral hygiene is still all up to you. It pays to stay away from vices like tobacco which you know could ruin much more than just the color of your teeth.

(Source: Why Does Coffee Stain Your Teeth?, eHow)