If you’ve noticed that your teeth are starting to lose their pearly white pigment, you ought to visit a dentist as soon as possible. After all, having translucent teeth doesn’t have to be a permanent condition. With proper dental care, you can regain the lost minerals that caused the lack of colour. Alternatively, you could simply get dental veneers at ivanhoedental.com — though we’ll get to that solution later.
For now, let’s talk about what happens to make the teeth lose their opacity. After we establish that, we’ll discuss why some people develop transparent teeth while others don’t. Lastly, we’ll go into how you can fix the condition yourself and what to do if the methods we mention don’t work for you.
How Do Teeth Lose Their Opacity?
To understand precisely what happens inside the teeth to cause loss of pigment, we have to know what the inside of a tooth looks like. There are three layers that make up our teeth.
The outermost layer is the enamel — that’s the hard protective coating that covers our teeth. Enamel is usually transparent, but we can stain it by drinking tea, coffee, wine, and fruit juices too frequently. Still, correcting surface-level stains is pretty easy.
Of course, the enamel is partly to blame for clear teeth. The calcium and phosphate crystals that make up our teeth are ultimately susceptible to bacteria and acid erosion. The foods we eat spur those reactions on, causing tooth demineralization. But since enamel is already somewhat transparent, that condition often extends deeper into the tooth.
The layer that gives our teeth most of their color is the one underneath the enamel. Even though dentin and enamel contain the same basic elements, dentin’s porosity makes it significantly more vulnerable to harsh environments. That’s why it can’t provide much cover for the sensitive core of the tooth.
Generally, this material is off-white, grayish, or even slightly yellow. As we have established, if the teeth are stripped of calcium and phosphate, they can become fully transparent. Still, most of the time, our teeth start losing opacity near the edges before the condition reaches the dentin too. That’s because dentin usually doesn’t extend to the edges of our teeth.
Pulpy Core — Blood Vessels and Nerves
Finally, dentin protects the pulp chamber in the center of our teeth, which is where the nerve endings and blood vessels are stored. Believe it or not, that layer can affect the color of our teeth too.
For example, getting hit in the face can cause a bleed in the tissue around the tooth, which can drain into the tooth through the pulp chamber. That can produce a pink stain or bruise inside the tooth, which will be all the more obvious if a patient’s teeth are already transparent.
Causes of Translucent Teeth
There are several factors that could cause teeth to lose their color. First, there are the foods we eat. As we all know, acidic and sweet foods and drinks like citric fruits, juices, coffee, and candy can attract bacteria that can ruin our enamel.
On the other hand, sometimes our bodies are to blame for the acid that enters our mouth. That’s why people with heartburn, morning sickness, or even bulimia tend to have weaker teeth, particularly in the back of their mouths. Additionally, frequent vomiting (as well as certain medications and medical conditions) can dry out the mouth, creating a more acidic environment.
But that’s not all. Some genetic and autoimmune diseases could also affect the color of our teeth. For example, Enamel Hypoplasia is a condition that affects the formation of minerals at the early stages of enamel development.
Then there’s Celiac disease, which usually causes an inability to digest gluten. But in some cases, the disease can also result in thin enamel.
As you might imagine, avoiding acidic and sweet foods is much easier than getting rid of genetic conditions. So with that in mind, let’s talk about how we could prevent translucent teeth from becoming even weaker.
How to Fix Transparent Teeth
The appearance of clear teeth isn’t the only thing we should be worrying about. After all, the illnesses, foods, and bacteria that cause this condition don’t stop at merely stripping our teeth of color. Rather, the damage to the structure of the teeth also affects their sensitivity and durability.
With that in mind, we thought it best to talk about how to go about reversing the loss of color. To begin with, let’s discuss some of the techniques you can use in everyday life.
Unless the loss of opacity was caused by underlying conditions like Enamel Hypoplasia and Celiac disease, there are certain things we can do to regain the minerals that make up our teeth. For one, we can lower our consumption of acidic foods and beverages.
On top of that, some people have noted the efficacy of several other methods. Since translucent teeth signify that we’re lacking certain minerals, taking calcium and vitamin D supplements could fix them. Of course, any supplements we take should be cleared by a doctor first. Since calcium has been known to clog arteries, it’s usually taken with vitamin K2.
Then again, ingesting additional calcium may be unnecessary — it can also come in a remineralizing toothpaste. If you don’t want to buy a commercial product, just mix calcium carbonate, trace minerals, baking soda, and coconut oil. To improve the taste, we recommend adding a few drops of orange or peppermint oil.
But really, even using regular fluoride toothpaste should enrich the enamel. Aside from that, we can keep our acidity in check by drinking plenty of water to boost saliva production. Sipping on water, particularly after swallowing acidic or sweet foods, can also wash away those harsh elements. Lastly, lactose-free milk and probiotic yogurt could be another way to restore calcium and lower the acidity of our teeth.
The Dentist’s Approach to Handling Translucent Teeth
Since we have no way of knowing exactly what’s making our teeth lose their colour, booking a dental appointment should always be the first step we take. After all, we could struggle to put colour back in our teeth for months before deciding to throw in the towel. So while you attempt the methods we’ve explained above, make sure you get checked out by a professional as well.
If nothing else, they’ll be able to place teeth veneers over the most affected teeth. On the other hand, if dental veneers aren’t necessary, they could apply resin bonding over the teeth to replace the lost enamel.
Alternatively, your dentist might suggest a procedure like enamel remineralization. During the treatment, they would use a mixture of different minerals to fill in the pores of your teeth. That should effectively make your translucent teeth strong and pearly white again.