November 9, 2023
Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate and catch-up with family and friends and feast on all of your favorite holiday side dishes and treats. Unfortunately, some of the most popular holiday dishes, like cranberry sauce, are known to lead to discoloration if you aren’t mindful of how much you’re eating. Whether you just invested in teeth whitening and want to maintain your results or you don’t want to cause your smile to become further discolored, you’ll want to avoid these stain-causing Thanksgiving foods.
What Causes Teeth to Become Stained?
Teeth can become stained for a variety of reasons, some that are unpreventable, like aging, and others that can be addressed, like consuming certain stain-causing foods and beverages and poor oral hygiene habits.
There are two types of discoloration. Extrinsic staining is present on the surface of the teeth and typically the result of consuming certain items, like using tobacco products and drinking too much coffee, and intrinsic staining, which is discoloration present below the surface of the teeth. This is often the result of genetic conditions, trauma, and oral health problems.
With professional-grade ingredients and treatments, like teeth whitening administered by a cosmetic dentist, you can address both types of stains and brighten your smile by up to several shades. However, store-bought kits and whitening strips often don’t have the ability to safely tackle serious discoloration.
Stain-Causing Thanksgiving Foods & Drinks
- Mulled Wine: While mulled wine’s delicious spices, like star anise, cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves, aren’t harmful for your smile, it’s the red wine that can leave a lasting impression on your teeth.
- Cranberry Sauce: There are two camps of people during Thanksgiving—those that love cranberry sauce, and those that despise it. If you’re in the latter, it may be a good idea to limit how much you eat this holiday season. Not only can the dark color of the berries cause your teeth to discolor, but the fruit is also very acidic, meaning it can lead to enamel erosion.
- Balsamic Vinegar: If you love branching out from the traditional side dishes and making your own fancy Thanksgiving foods, you might use balsamic vinegar in a homemade dressing or to roast with some brussels sprouts and bacon. Its dark color and high acidity can impact not only the appearance of your smile, but also its health.
- Berry Pies: Blackberries, blueberries, and cherries all taste wonderful in pies, but they can lead to stained teeth, too. While you don’t have to completely cut out this sweet treat, it’s a good idea to limit how much you eat to prevent your smile from becoming affected.
About the Practice
At East Brunswick Family & Implant Dentistry, we want all of our patients to be able to enjoy a beautiful smile that they feel proud to let show. That’s why we offer a wide variety of cosmetic dental treatments to help tackle common aesthetic imperfections, like dental damage and discoloration. If your smile is bogged down by stains, you can quickly address the issue with one of our professional, customized take-home teeth whitening kits. For questions or to schedule an appointment, visit our website or call 732-238-6660.
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