How Dentin Affects the Appearance of Teeth

Blonde young woman hides her yellow teeth with a bouquet of yellow sunflowers at a farmers market
Quick – what color are natural teeth supposed to be? If you answered white, you’re only half-right. Natural teeth are almost never bone-white because the substance inside our teeth known as dentin is yellow. This means that natural teeth often appear light grey or light yellow. Today, let’s talk a little more about the structure of your teeth and how you can get bright, pearly-white teeth you’ve always wanted.

What’s in a Tooth?

Have you ever wondered what’s inside your tooth?

  • Enamel, the hardest surface in your body, covers the outside of your teeth. It acts as a protective shield and varies in thickness and opacity.
  • Underneath your enamel is dentin, a yellowish tissue filled with small tubes radiating from the center of your tooth. If your enamel is damaged and your dentin is exposed, this often results in tooth sensitivity because these dentin tubes are connected to nerve endings from your inner tooth.
  • Your inner tooth is called the pulp and contains blood vessels and nerves.
  • Additionally, the cementum and periodontal ligament are important supportive structures that help bind your teeth to your jaw.

Why Are My Teeth Yellow?

Now that you understand the internal structure of your teeth, you can see why some people’s teeth may naturally appear yellow. For many, the translucency of their enamel allows more of the yellowish dentin to shine through. In these cases, yellow teeth are not necessarily unhealthy or a sign of bad oral hygiene! However, other causes of yellow teeth include:

  • Plaque & poor dental hygiene
  • Chewing tobacco & smoking
  • Certain medications like tetracycline
  • Foods & drinks that stain teeth, such as wine, coffee, alcohol, soda & citrus

Brunette woman smiles with bright while teeth while wearing a black tanktop in a dirt field

Teeth Whitening & Porcelain Veneers

If you are unsatisfied with the color of your teeth, schedule a cosmetic dentistry consultation at Palos Heights Family Dental:

  • Our safe and effective professional teeth whitening can get you the tooth color you want. Our highly-trained team uses stronger products that you can buy at a drugstore to give you dramatic results while ensuring your safety.
  • Or consider porcelain veneers! Veneers are custom-crafted thin shells of tooth-colored material that can be bonded to your teeth to alter their shape and/or color. These are more lasting than teeth whitening and can be designed to look just the way you want.

We can brighten up your teeth and help you achieve your dream smile with teeth whitening or porcelain veneers. Schedule a consultation today!

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How Dentin Affects the Appearance of Teeth was last modified: September 22nd, 2018 by Palos Heights Family Dental