15 Foods That Stain Your Teeth And Drinks

What Causes Tooth Discoloration?

The outer layer of your teeth, known as enamel, is a porous material. Unfortunately, that means that it is quite easy to stain. Discoloration in your enamel can be caused by darkly colored food and drink, because those items are often high in chromogens. Chromogens are compounds that adhere to enamel and cause staining.

Chromogens aren’t the only culprit, though. Even clear or light-colored foods can stain your teeth! The more acidic a food is, the larger a threat it poses to your teeth’s white shine. Another factor to look out for is tannins. Tannins are found in wines, plants, seeds and other substances, and can make stains more lasting and visible on your teeth.

9 Foods that Stain Teeth

Below are nine of the most common foods that cause teeth discoloration. Each of these has a high concentration of chromogens, high acidity and/or a large amount of tannins.

food that stain teeth - tomato sauce

Tomato/Pasta Sauce



balsamic vinegar

Balsamic Vinegar



food coloring

Food Coloring

colored candy

Colored Candy



soy sauce

Soy Sauce



6 Drinks that Stain Teeth

Many of us are familiar with coffee and tea’s discoloring effect on the teeth, but you might be surprised to know that light colored drinks are often just as bad as darker drinks. While darker drinks have more chromogens, many lighter drinks (such as white wine) are still highly acidic and contain tannins.







Clear and Colored Soda

sports drink

Sports Drinks



red and white wine

Red and White Wine


How to Prevent Teeth Stains And Discoloration

You can, of course, prevent teeth stains by limiting your consumption of the above foods and drinks. But, for some of us, (coffee-lovers especially) that might be difficult.

To counteract potential tooth stains, rinse your mouth out with water or mouthwash immediately after eating or drinking a stain-causing food/drink. Or better yet, brush your teeth if you have a toothbrush handy.

When drinking sodas, sports drinks and juices, use a straw to protect your teeth. If you are a sports drink fanatic, try switching flavors regularly, to diminish the impact of any one color on your teeth.

And of course, as with all dental health issues, you should visit your dentist for regular cleanings and checkups.


Contact Smiles By Dixon And Get Your Teeth Whitened Today!

So you’ve already got stained teeth, and you want to bring back their bright, white shine. There are a few teeth whitening options you may have. You can get professional in-office teeth whitening done by your dentist, or order an at-home teeth whitening kit. Some dentists offer a combination of the two for best results.

If you are in the Gainesville, Georgia area, contact Dr. Dixon to schedule a consultation. We will be happy to help you get back that gorgeous smile!