Why Are My Kids Teeth Yellow?

kids brushing teeth

You might say that we are all, as a society, obsessed with pearly white teeth and eliminating even the slightest imperfections from our smiles. As professional dental health specialists, the team at Epic Dentistry for Kids knows that, even though there are many treatments aimed at improving the look of our smiles, there also are some situations we cannot avoid. Such is the case with children’s teeth staining or yellow teeth in kids.

First of all, slightly yellow teeth in children are by no means a terrible thing; however, as a parent, there are some things you should keep an eye out for. Join us in reviewing why some kids have yellow teeth and what you should do about it.

What Causes Yellow Teeth in Kids?

You can blame yellow teeth on anything from poor dental hygiene to genetics. Parents love seeing their children smile, so it’s only understandable that many parents will worry if they notice a yellowish tint over their kids’ smiles. Any discoloration or staining is a cause for concern to new and experienced parents.

Infants’ primary teeth are, usually, much more white than their adult counterparts. As kids lose their baby teeth and have them replaced by permanent teeth, they get stronger with the additional dentin in each piece. This additional concentration of dentin looks slightly more yellow under the enamel of each tooth. 

This is the price we pay for stronger and more resilient teeth.

Plaque

Some adults might wonder why are their kids’ teeth more yellow near the gum line. As a kid’s oral hygiene routine deteriorates over time and they don’t receive any help at home or from a professional to clean their teeth, you might notice a yellow and hard film developing around the base of their teeth. 

Your child’s dietary choices can also affect negatively their oral hygiene. Too many sugary beverages or starchy foods and a lacking dental hygiene routine will help promote the growth of harmful bacteria. More bacteria and saliva means a higher plaque buildup, increased risk of cavities, and, of course, unhealthy yellow teeth.

Genetics & Medical Conditions

We all have an enamel layer surrounding each tooth for their protection; however, how much enamel we have is dependent, mostly, on our genetic makeup. The thinner the enamel layer, the more yellow will our teeth look. 

There are some genetic conditions that describe these reduced concentrations of enamel such as enamel hypoplasia. Also, some other conditions, such as hepatitis, can make their teeth look yellow. Early visits to the pediatric dentist, as recommended by the American Dental Association (ADA), will help determine what problems there are, if any, with your kid’s teeth.

Supplements

Please keep in mind that some nutritional or medical supplements can have a negative effect and produce some discoloration. As you know, it’s all about balance; too much or too little of one thing can be equally harmful. 

Remember how we spoke about enamel and its role in making your teeth yellow? Well, if your child receives too much fluoride from organic or artificial sources, they may develop a condition called fluorosis. This condition makes the enamel look yellow and can lead to brown spots over your child’s teeth.

Is There Any Solution for The Yellow Teeth Problem?

Yes. Even though some yellow coloration is inevitable, especially as the patient ages, there are several ways to ensure your children’s teeth are as pearly white as possible. Let’s start with the basics.

The Importance of Brushing Your Teeth

As we mentioned, there’s an undeniable correlation between your child’s dental hygiene and teeth coloration. First things first. Start by helping your child brush their teeth properly. Help your kid brush their teeth more often, preferably after every meal.

Just as we recommend when using an orthodontic appliance, your child will have to brush their teeth constantly, but be careful about doing so right after consuming acidic foods and drinks, such as orange juice and lemonades. The acid and the chemicals from the toothpaste will only lead to increased erosion of your tooth’s enamel.

Good practices when brushing your child’s teeth include doing so for at least 2 minutes every time, doing so gently in a circular motion, and brushing the outside, lingual, and chewing surfaces of your teeth. Some whitening toothpaste might also help.

Adapt Your Child’s Diet

Some fruits and vegetables with higher water content and a different nutritional value can really help with your kid’s yellow teeth problem. Raw fruits and vegetables with a higher water content can cleanse the gums of plaque and harmful bacteria. It’s not a substitute for proper tooth brushing, but it can help. Consider integrating more of these items into your kid’s diet:

  • Watermelon
  • Cantaloupe
  • Peaches
  • Cucumber
  • Lettuce
  • Celery
  • Tomatoes
  • Bell Peppers

High levels of vitamin C in your child’s system will also help prevent the development of plaque and periodontal complications. As we examined before, plaque is directly related to yellow teeth problems. The math checks out: higher vitamin C levels, lower chances of plaque, fewer yellow teeth problems.

Always Ask a Pediatric Dentist in Aurora

If you notice your child’s teeth are getting yellow or stained, try taking them to an experienced pediatric dentist like Dr. Patterson for a full review and determine what is causing the problem.

Maybe all your kid will need is changes to their toothbrushing techniques, but if there’s a need for anything else, a professional will be your best bet. Even if you only need at-home tooth whitening treatments, you might as well get some guidance from a professional team like the one at Epic Dentistry for Kids.

Please don’t try any treatments without first contacting a specialist and don’t initiate any whitening treatments before your child has all their baby teeth replaced by permanent ones. Set an appointment and get in touch with our team.

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