Do you find yourself wanting whiter teeth? Well, you're not alone. Studies show that nearly half of all Americans wish they had whiter teeth. According to a study stated by BBC, eighteen to fifty percent of people are dissatisfied with the color of their teeth.
And tooth whitening is near the top of the list of most demanded dental procedures in the USA. But does a set of pearly whites automatically mean you have a mouthful of healthy teeth? Well, not quite.
It seems that tooth discoloration can be caused by a myriad of sources. While food and beverage stains don't necessarily contribute to bad oral health -- and overall dental hue can be attributed to genetic factors -- it could be bacteria and even fungi that are causing the color change to your smile.
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Other factors that may impact the color of teeth include aging, tobacco use, overuse of fluoride and antibiotic use, reveals Colgate. There is also such a thing called intrinsic discoloration, which can be attributed to trauma amongst other factors.
Strangely, one type of dental discoloration known as black stain has even been found to curb tooth decay in some studies. The discoloration is visible along the margins of the gum line and is thought to contain microbes that "might be somehow protective."
So, while the color of your teeth may not be a perfect indicator of your oral health, no one's going to blame you for wanting the cosmetic procedure.