Tooth discoloration can be classified as extrinsic or intrinsic. Intrinsic or internal discoloration can be sub-categorized into acute internal discoloration and enamel discoloration. Food, medications or fluids may cause extrinsic discoloration. There can be many causes of stained teeth in children.
- Organic compound, found in foods and drinks, get incorporated, into the tooth film, causing direct external discoloration. A coffee or tea stain is an example of direct staining.
- Indirect external discoloration can be caused due to cationic antiseptics like chlorhexidine and metal salts like iron.
- Metallic indirect discoloration may be due to metallic salts like iron supplements.
The factors responsible for causing intrinsic staining of teeth include:
- Systemic syndromes, metabolic disorders, tetracycline stains, dentin defects, fluorosis, enamel hypoplasia and trauma.
The following is the list of various factors causing dental stains:
- Alkaptonuria condition can cause brown staining in teeth.
- A brownish-red discoloration may be caused by congenital erythropoietic porphyria.
- A yellow-green staining may be caused by congenital hyperbilirubinemia, because of high biliverdin levels in blood.
- Enamel hypoplasia is often caused due to systemic syndromes.
- The condition dentinogenesis imperfecta II affects both primary as well as permanent teeth. When they are trans-illuminated, they appear opalescent and consist of a bluish or brownish color.
- The primary teeth and permanent teeth in dentinal dysplasia type 1 may consist of an amber translucency.
- The enamel and dentin will be stained a gray-brown color in tetracycline staining.
- The dental discoloration in fluorosis, which is caused due to excessive intake of fluoride, varies from brown-black to milky white appearance.
- Trauma to the teeth causes tooth discoloration, because of capillary damage inside the tooth. This enables the hemosiderin, an iron-storage compound to enter the dentinal tubules. In traumatized deciduous teeth, the accumulation of these hemoglobin products may turn their color darker. Baby teeth stained gray-black will often require endodontic treatment.
- Amelogenesis imperfecta can cause staining in teeth, where the color of the enamel can range from “snow-capped” to yellow-brown.
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