Are These Common Problems Aging Your Smile? Our STL Dentists Can Help

Written by Dr. Grayem on Feb 22, 2019

The best way to keep your smile looking young and healthy for years to come is to maintain strong dental enamel. Today, our Saint Louis cosmetic dentists are going to be walking you through a few of the common aesthetic issues that can make teeth look worn and older. We’ll be talking about things you can do to avoid these issues, and how you can treat these problems if and when they do occur.

Dental Discoloration 

Stained teeth, generally speaking, appear older and less healthy than unstained teeth. Your enamel is more likely to develop discoloration as it becomes weaker and thinner. In order to minimize your risk of developing stains you want to:

  • Protect and fortify your enamel by keeping up with your oral hygiene plan, and using products that contain fluoride
  • Rinse your smile with water after eating and drinking anything other than water
  • Stay hydrated, so that your body is able to produce plenty of enamel-strengthening saliva
  • Minimize your consumption of staining foods and drinks (coffee, tea, red wine, red sauces, etc.) as well as acidic substances (citrus fruits, fruit juices, sodas, and red wine)

In order to improve existing discoloration, you may benefit from:

  • Professional dental whitening, which uses a topical formulation to lift stains from the tooth surface
  • Dental bonding and porcelain veneers, both of which cover diminished enamel with restorative materials 

Dental Damage and Erosion 

If your teeth have accumulated small cracks and chips, or if they are starting to look worn down, your smile may be looking older than it really is. The best way to prevent this type of damage is to take the steps we’ve already talked about to maintain your dental enamel. Additionally, you want to make sure that you reach out for treatment if you ever notice symptoms of bruxism (chronic dental grinding). Common symptoms include:

  • Tooth pain, unrelated to infection
  • Jaw pain, this discomfort may also manifest as headaches and ear pain
  • Identifiable grinding and clenching during the day, especially in times of stress 

Treatments for this type of damage include:

  • Dental bonding, custom crowns, and veneers to repair and cover compromised teeth
  • Treatments that minimize bruxism: oral appliances protect teeth from pressure, while restorations and orthodontic treatment improve bite function

No matter what your smile looks like today, our Saint Louis dentists can help you enjoy optimal oral health in the years to come. The easiest way to get started is to contact our dental team by phone, or through the Contact Us on our website!