Food That Stains Your Teeth

Health is a constant balancing act. For every delicious and nutritious bite you put in your body there’s an equal word of warning about why doing it might not be the best idea. Many of the healthy foods we love are also edible bombs that destroy our white smile. Keeping those pearly whites sparkling between trips to your Santa Cruz dentist is a challenge even for diligent brushers and flossers. Here are the foods to be aware of in regards to tooth discoloration.

Fruit juices

A nice glass of fruit juice or a delicious smoothie is a great way to start your morning with energy. Be sure that you’re brushing after the meal, however. Citruses in particular are highly acidic and can eat away at the portion of enamel that holds whiteness best. While citrus juice is the biggest offender, acidic foods like tomato sauce can also cause this affect. 

Coffee, tea, and wine

Alas, all good things in life are a double-edged sword. Coffee and tea both contain very high levels of tannins. These acids break down enamel and stain what’s left. Wine is also tannin rich, which is why all three of these beverages share some health benefits. 

Your Santa Cruz dentist will tell you: be aware of the sugar content of coffee and tea as well. The longer sugars are on your teeth, the longer the germs have to feast and produce cavity-causing plague and tartar. Consider abstaining from these drinks unless you’re able to quickly brush your teeth soon after.

Fresh blackberries, blueberries, and more

If you can’t get the food out of your sweater, you probably won’t be able to get it out of your teeth. Blackberries, blueberries, and beets are all foods with a heavy coloring. It doesn’t just wash itself off. If you are a fan of these delicious snacks you’re going to have to spend extra time on whitening. While some dentists are sticklers for avoiding these heavy staining berries, most Santa Cruz dentists are in favor of enjoying the local produce.

Soy and curry

The dark or distinctive coloring of these treats is the clue that they can harm your teeth. Soy leaves a yellow, unpleasant stain behind. Curry can also be highly acidic, which compounds the effects of its bright yellow or green coloring. Neither of these go well with your enamel. 

Quick tips to combat stains

The easiest tip to minimize stains is to brush as soon as possible after eating or drinking, every time. What feels like a burden at first will quickly become a habit. Two minutes in a restroom after lunch or drinks out will lead to a whiter, effortlessly more attractive smile. Your teeth won’t just look better, but they’ll be healthier as well. The next time you stop in at your Santa Cruz dentist it’ll be a much cheaper visit.

If you can’t brush, chew a fibrous food like an apple. This will give your teeth a “rough brush” experience as the fiber helps strip away plague and stains. 

Once a week or so, dip your tooth brush in baking soda and use that instead of toothpaste. Be sure to rinse thoroughly afterwards. The abrasiveness of baking soda is perfect for scrubbing teeth pearly white again, just remember it can be too tough on teeth. 

Food that stains your teeth is impossible to avoid. Some of your favorite treats are probably culprits in your dingy smile. A few simple steps and a little knowledge will let you know when you can dive in, and when it’s better to pass on the coffee until you’ve got your toothbrush with you. Your smile will thank you!

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From Dr. Peabody

I love being a dentist, and for 33 years I have tremendously enjoyed providing dental care for you as well as the relationships we’ve formed.  I have decided to retire from the private practice of dentistry so that I can spend more time with my family.

I have interviewed several quality dentists, and I am delighted that I found an outstanding dentist that I know will fit my current patients and the community of Santa Cruz.

With sincere confidence, I am happy to introduce Dr. Martha Catalina Payne. (Dr. Cat)

Please visit her website:
to learn more about her and schedule your next appointment with her.

I will work closely with Dr. Cat in this transition so she has a thorough understanding of each patient’s dental needs.

I am confident that you will enjoy Dr. Cat as much as I have enjoyed getting to know her. The team is also quite impressed with her, and you will continue to see them at your reserved dental care visits.

Dr. Guy Peabody DDS