Yellow teeth: causes and treatments

Worried about your yellow teeth? Find out what causes tooth discolouration and how it can be treated.

Let’s get one thing straight, nobody has naturally pure white teeth.

All teeth have a very slight yellow hue. That’s their normal shade. But the degree of yellowness can vary from person to person and, for some people, it can make them feel incredibly self-conscious.

Sound familiar?

Not to worry, there are things we can do to help. Here we take a closer look at exactly what causes yellowing teeth and the teeth whitening treatments currently available at Kiln Lane Dental.


What causes yellow teeth?

Age is the primary culprit.

As we get older, the outer layer of enamel on our teeth gradually starts to thin and wear away – revealing the dentin underneath. And unfortunately, the natural colour of dentin is yellow. Again, this is a perfectly normal process that only happens due to ageing. But several other factors can add to the issue of yellowing teeth, causing stains both on and below the surface of the enamel.

Some of the most common include:

  1. Diet

Some foods and drinks, particularly those high in tannins, can cause significant tooth discolouration. Examples include tea, coffee, red wine, fizzy pops, various fruits and berries, tomato-based sauces, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, sugary sweets and chocolate.

  1. Smoking

Nicotine itself may be colourless, but it is one of the main causes of yellow teeth. Over time, it will start to leave dark yellow and brown stains on the surface of your teeth. Tar found in tobacco products (such as cigarettes and cigars) can also add to the discolouration.

  1. Illness

Certain illnesses can affect enamel and dentin, therefore leading to excessive tooth discolouration. What’s more, treatment for certain diseases – such as radiation and chemotherapy for head and neck cancer – can also, unfortunately, cause yellowing.

  1. Medications

Tablets prescribed for various medical conditions (e.g. asthma, allergies, high blood pressure) can often cause yellow teeth, as well as some antibiotics, including tetracycline and doxycycline. This is particularly true if the antibiotics are given to children, whose teeth are still developing.

  1. Poor oral hygiene

Tooth discolouration can also occur if you don’t look after your teeth, as plaque and stain-producing substances will not be removed. But it’s worth pointing out, even the most diligent of brushers and flossers are not immune. Yellow teeth can be caused by many different factors, including those outlined above and more.


Treatment for yellow teeth


How to get rid of yellow teeth

There are many simple ways to help brighten up your smile, such as eating the right foods, regularly using a saltwater rinse, and changing the way you brush. Detailed information on these home remedies can be found in our previous blog ‘How to whiten teeth’, along with lots of useful tips and tricks. So be sure to take a look.

Several treatment options are also available for yellow teeth. And no matter what the cause or how severe the discolouration – here at Kiln Lane Dental – we should be able to help. We currently offer four teeth whitening treatments, including:

  • BlancOne® whitening
  • Home whitening kits and replacement trays
  • Zoom whitening
  • Enlighten whitening

All of these can help to turn back the clock and restore your teeth to a brighter, more natural shade. And the right one for you will depend on several factors, including the cause and level of yellowing and your individual preferences.

To find out more about tooth whitening, you’re welcome to get in touch at any time. We’re always happy to help and will gladly answer any questions you may have. We can also arrange a complimentary consultation, in which we can discuss your tooth discolouration in detail and create a bespoke plan that is perfect for your needs.

Either give us a call on 01744 25776  or send an email to and a member of the team will get back to you as soon as possible.