Brown Spots: Causes & How To Treat Them

A shining smile is essential for any person’s look, so seeing brown spots on the teeth is enough to diminish self-confidence in one second. Moreover, brown spots and discoloration can signal health problems that require a visit to a Washington Heights dentist. So, what causes brown spots on teeth? Is it possible to remove them?

Brown spots on teeth can be barely noticeable or quite obvious and range from yellowish tones to dark brown. While these spots usually indicate poor oral hygiene, they could also be an early sign of other health conditions.

Read below the most common reasons why you have brown spots and how to treat them.

A Washington Heights dentist removing brown spots on teeths

What Are The Most Common Causes Of Brown Spots on Teeth?

Brown spots have several potential causes. One is tartar, which is hardened plaque and other minerals that build up on the teeth when brushing does not remove them. The build-up of tartar leaves yellow, brown, or tan spots above the gum that can spread over time. When tartar appears below the gum, it can look brown or black because it causes gum recession.

Poor Oral Hygiene

Poor oral hygiene can cause tooth decay. Sometimes, tooth decay can be bad enough to require a root canal procedure. The pulp and nerves inside the tooth and root can die, leading to a brownish color in the tooth. Injury or trauma can also cause discoloration and damage to the nerves.

For these situations, a visit to the Washington Heights dentist is mandatory. Otherwise, you could lose your tooth.

Staining Liquids & Foods

You must be careful with what you eat and drink to minimize yellow, gray, or brown spots on your teeth. Caffeinated drinks like tea and coffee can cause brownish stains, while other stained drinks and foods like blackberries, blueberries, pomegranates, and red wine can cause gray and yellowish spots.

If you do not brush your teeth soon after consumption, you can cause stains to accumulate.

Carbohydrates and sugar also cause discoloration, so be aware of foods rich in these ingredients. Finally, quit or at least avoid smoking because tobacco products leave dark spots and stains over time.

Dental Fluorosis (Excess Of Fluoride)

Although fluoride can help you keep your teeth strong and healthy, it can also be too much of a good thing, causing dental fluorosis.

Dental fluorosis is common for children whose baby teeth have yet to push through. This condition usually shows white markings, but in rare and severe cases, it shows brown spots.

Do not be scared if you see your children with white markings or light brown spots in their teeth, especially if their baby teeth are still visible. Take them to a Washington Heights dental clinic to see the source of the problem and solve it.

Age & Health Conditions

Poor oral hygiene is often the common cause of brown spots, but some result from genetics and aging factors. Prescription mouthwash, antibiotics, and other medications can also cause dark spots.

Old dental works like metal fillings may cause brown spots, although they are not related to dental hygiene. White fillings do the same because they accumulate stains over time.

Some health issues can cause brown spots on teeth as well. Enamel hypoplasia is one of them. This condition consists of malnutrition during pregnancy, toxin exposure, or lack of crucial vitamins like vitamin D. It leaves brown spots on teeth and a pitted texture.

Celiac disease is another health condition related to brown spots on teeth. Celiacs also have a higher risk for dry mouth, canker sores, and ulcers.

A Washington Heights dentist removing brown spots on teeths

How To Remove Brown Spots

Your dentist may recommend good at-home oral hygiene, including brushing twice daily and flossing. You should also quit smoking because it is the most common cause of brown spots.

Other recommendations include:

  • Teeth Whitening: You can try over-the-counter whitening products like bleaching kits and toothpaste. These products must be endorsed by the American Dental Association (ADA). Ask your Washington Heights dentist about professional whitening treatments if your teeth do not respond to at-home whitening methods. Also, avoid using whitening products too much because they can weaken the enamel.
  • Dental Bonding Or Porcelain Veneers: Permanent or semi-permanent treatments like porcelain veneers may also work for brown spots. Not only do veneers cover up brown spots, but they correct crooked and chipped teeth. Cosmetic bonding is another professional solution that improves your smile by covering dark spots and strengthening the tooth.

Find The Best Help With a Washington Heights Dentist

Flossing daily and brushing your teeth at least twice a day will prevent many dental problems, including brown spots. However, a visit to the dentist is also mandatory to prevent other dental issues. Schedule your appointment today with Esthetix Dental, a dental clinic that offers many services to help you keep your teeth strong and healthy.


Esthetix Dental Spa Logo

Esthetix Dentist, NYC’s Dental Implant & Cosmetic Specialist
285 Fort Washington Ave,
New York, NY 10032

Phone: (212) 795-9675