Many people face dental issues that relates to oral health and aesthetics in the form of white spots on teeth. The white spots may appear due to hyper-mineralization, fluorosis, enamel hypoplasia and other reasons.
The enamel hypoplasia occurs at the early stages of teeth development in the form of thin enamel particularly in children that becomes the reason for grooves and pits on the surface of teeth. The surface deformities on delicate enamel lends itself to white spots with time.
Many patients face the problem of yellowish teeth that becomes prominent when one smiles, therefore they undergo whitening procedures to brighten up their smiles.
However, the whitening treatment for white spots on teeth is different that other whitening procedures.
How your teeth get stains?
It is crucial to understand how stains develop on your teeth before looking for its removal. It mainly starts with bad eating habits that directly affects your teeth health and dental aesthetics.
For example, eating sugar increases sensitivity and tooth decays by creating tooth decaying plaque. Similarly, your teeth may also get affected by the type of food you ingest.
Food containing dyes and acidic material is hazardous for enamel, while carbonated drinks also damage the teeth.
Let’s have a detailed look at other less familiar causes of white spots on teeth
Poor Oral Hygiene
The acidic environment in your mouths lays the ground for tooth decay and stains and promotes cavity-causing bacteria. The chance of plaque accumulation increases with poor dental hygiene which foments the bacteria to flourish on the teeth. The harmful bacteria starts to cause damage due to lack of brushing and flossing at regular basis.
Due to poor oral hygiene essential minerals are striped away from teeth that cause white spots to form on teeth.
In addition, the maintenance of good oral hygiene becomes more difficult with the braces and other dental implants over teeth.
Hence, it becomes necessary to remain cautious about oral hygiene before it gets too late for oral health and dental aesthetics.
White Spots Due to Dental Fluorosis
Fluoride is a vital thing to achieve oral health in toothpaste for teeth. However, the excessive use of fluoride becomes the reason for a condition known as fluorosis.
The children are more likely to fall prey to this condition due to their lack of capacity to absorb fluoride. It is imperative to pay attention and supervise the quantity of fluoride in the toothpaste to counter the problem of fluorosis.
The symptoms of fluorosis are pitted enamel or development of tiny white streaks on teeth surface which are sometimes difficult to notice.
Stay in touch with your dentists if your children exhibit any sign of fluorosis.
Lack of Nutrition Affects Oral Health
Enamel is the hardened protective covering for the teeth that require several minerals for its health and maintenance. Calcium plays a critical role in the development of enamel.
The lack of calcium in daily diet deprives the enamel of its fundamental building block which results in demineralized white spots on surface of the teeth.
Role of Genetics in Teeth Problems
Genetics, among other likely reasons, may also play role in forming white spots on your teeth and defining key physical aspects of the human body.
If the white spots are common in your family, then it might be due to genetic reasons. Extra care is required to treat the patients with history of genetic issue with regard to white spots in family.
Site Effects of Certain Medications
Whenever we face a problem in our body, we think of treating it with certain medication suggested by a doctor.
We usually find ourselves fortunate in treatment of our body problems with medications. However, sometimes there may be few side effects of the medications we take for treatment. These side effects may include the development of white spots on teeth.
Unfortunately, there are some medicines that are linked to the development of white spots on teeth. These medication causing white spots on teeth mainly consists of certain antibiotics that are generally prohibited for children as their teeth are yet in the development stage.
If you face any such complication with your children, you should immediately consult with your doctor about ongoing prescription for treatment of a problem.
Types of White Spots on your Teeth
As discussed earlier, if your child has white spots on his teeth, there may be numerous reasons behind it.
In many cases, the white spots on teeth are harmless but make one feel conscious about their dental appearance and aesthetics while smiling or conversing.
The types of white spots are listed below as follows:
Decalcification: Demineralization of Teeth
The decalcification of teeth occurs due to prolonged sticking of plaque that results in loss of calcium and minerals from the teeth. As a result, white spots start to appear as enamels wear away due to long-term bacterial build-up.
This type of tooth decay leads to the cavity and further deterioration of teeth with time if not treated early. The prevention of decalcification is frequent brushing and flossing, and in ensuring that no cavity develops on teeth.
The best treatment to keep bacteria from building up on teeth is to brush twice a day.
The symptom of Enamel Hypoplasia is more common in children but is sometimes observed in adults too. The main cause of enamel hypoplasia is lack of nutrition, prolonged illness and smoking at an early age.
Other reasons for Enamel Hypoplasia include side effects by different medications, especially use of particular types of antibiotics in children or any trauma to the teeth by any accident.
Moreover, the white spots are more prone to tooth decay, therefore, special care is required in treating such white spots on teeth.
Spots Due to Dental Fluorosis
The type of stains due to dental fluorosis appears usually brown or yellow. It mostly appears in children due to excessive fluoride.
However, the excess use toothpastes by children that contains fluoride may also lead towards dental fluorosis that may cause white, brown, or yellow stains to appear on teeth.
Patients with such type of stains may likely have ingested excess fluoride from food sources. Therefore, it is recommended that such patients must avoid supplements and toothpaste that contains fluoride.
How to Get Rid of White Spots on Teeth – Preventive Tips
Enamel Microabrasion for White Spots
Enamel microabrasion involves use of abrasive agents such as acidic substances. The method is also adopted to treat white spots on teeth on the outer surface of the enamel.
The technique of using abrasive agents is the conservative method primarily used for the improvement in discoloration of enamel.
The technique is generally followed by teeth whitening treatment to make the teeth appear more uniform.
Teeth Whitening and Bleaching Techniques
The teeth whitening technique is also applied to remove white spots and other stains on the teeth.
Many whitening products are available over the counter, such as whitening pastes and strips, which people may buy online.
People may also go to a professional dentist for a whitening treatment with more potent bleaching agents under careful observation by an expert.
Dentists may sometimes apply composite resin to treat patients of enamel hypoplasia. The composite resin is filled within the cavities to prevent further deterioration after removing plaque.
The method is only suitable for patients with little white spots.
The dentist may refer the patient for cosmetic treatment to conceal white spots. Dental veneers are placed as a protective covering on the front side of teeth.
The dental veneer conceals the white spots effectively and improves aesthetics. It is suggested to have dental veneers fitted by a professional cosmetic dentist.
Topical Fluoride Remineralization
Dentists are encouraged to use topical fluoride when there is a need for remineralization. The method is adopted to inhibit bacteria metabolism and hampers the growth of plaque-causing bacteria.
The technique is also applied to the patients facing enamel hypoplasia. The technique encourages enamel development by remineralization characteristic of topical fluoride and prevents teeth from further decay.
Fluoride Free Water for Infants
The children till the age of 3 years are prone to fluorosis. Therefore, fluoride-free water is suggested to add with formula milk for nourishment and prevent ingesting excess fluoride.
Testing For Well Water
The well water coming from beneath the surface contains excess minerals and high fluoride levels. The test on yearly basis should be conducted if the homes are connected to a private well.
The test to check fluoride level is imperative for the safety of children below the age of 3 year at your home. However, the fluoride levels may differ from place to place.
The Take Away from Article
- Practicing proper techniques to maintain excellent dental hygiene can help you prevent white spots and stains, cavities, tooth decay, gum disease, and other dental problem.
- Although the white spots on the teeth impact the appearance of teeth, they may not be a cause for concern for they are harmless.
- However, prolonged poor oral hygiene and bacteria build-up may cause white spots on teeth. It can encourage tooth decay and damage to dental health.
- Visit your doctor as soon as possible if your teeth start to feel sensitivity and pain due to white spots and stains.