Does Green Tea Stain Teeth?

Image(s): FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Having a smile with bright white teeth is a great personal asset.

No one wants to have stained teeth, so green tea enthusiasts may worry about whether green tea will cause stains or not.

The short anwer is, unfortunately, β€œyes”. However, I want to give you a more thorough answer, so allow me to explain something first.

Overview of tooth stains

There are two general types of stains in teeth, intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic stains happen on the inside of the tooth. Common causes of intrinsic stains are due to trauma, infections, dental materials, cavities, and nutritional deficiencies. As a side note, over the counter products for whitening teeth will probably not work with intrinsic stains.

Extrinsic stains are located on the outer part of our teeth. For this article I will focus on this type of stains. Most extrinsic stains are caused by contact with certain foods, beverages and other substances. In addition, certain bacteria and accumulation of dental plaque can also result in extrinsic stains.

Foods and beverages that stain your teeth

The truth is that foods and beverages that have a strong color in them or are acidic in nature (acids make staining easier) can stain your teeth. Among these substances are wine, tea, coffee, cola, sports drinks, berries, dark-colored fruit juices, sweets and deeply colored sauces.

Red wine is widely known as causing stains in teeth. Note that replacing red wine with white wine won’t do the trick, since according to NYU dental researchers, white wine can increase the odds of acquiring dark stains due to the natural acidity of wine.

Black tea and coffee, because of their dark color, also stain teeth. Green tea is milder, but it still has a staining effect.

Smoking tobacco is one of the leading causes of stained teeth. Another reason why one should give up smoking.

Thus, even if you stopped drinking green tea, there are plenty of other ways of getting your teeth stained! What can you do about it?

Dentists recommend using a straw when possible (not going to happen with my freshly-brewed green tea πŸ™‚ ). Chewing sugarless gum or rinsing with water can also help after you’ve drank any stain-causing beverage.

What if my teeth are already stained?

Image(s): FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The first thing that I would recommend to you is to go and see your dentist.

Don’t start looking for home remedies or teeth-whitening products since you need to assess your dental condition first. For example, you could have calculus, which only your dentist can remove.

sources:

Watts, A. Addy, M. “Tooth discolouration and staining: a review of the literature”Β British Dental JournalΒ Β 190, 309 – 316 (2001)
New York University. “White Wine Can Make Tooth Stains Darker.” ScienceDaily, 1 Apr. 2009.Β 

18 Comments

  1. zoomingjapan
    July 30, 2012

    Yes, green tea definitely gets stains on your teeth!
    I reduced my green tea consume recently, drinking more coffee and it’s not as bad anymore.
    I love green tea, though.
    Luckily it’s fairly easy to get rid of the stains again, you just have to visit your dentist regularly.

    Reply
  2. Sarah
    September 16, 2012

    My dentist recently told me that all types of tea stain teeth. I drink 3-5 cups a day, so this is sad news for me. The best way to remove stains is to gargle hydrogen peroxide between professional cleanings. It can be gargled right from the bottle or watered down with a little water.

    Reply
    1. Ricardo Caicedo
      September 16, 2012

      Hi Sarah, thanks for the comment.
      I drink a lot of tea as well, maybe it’s time that I pay the dentist a visit too!

      Reply
    2. bob
      December 26, 2014

      Be VERY careful with hydrogen peroxide. It can be dangerous stuff.

      Reply
    3. Salas
      December 22, 2016

      Maybe bicarbonate of soda is good to whiten teeth.U should try once a week or maybe twice

      Reply
  3. Amanda
    February 11, 2014

    I can’t imagine drinking tea from a straw either! I had some bad staining on the underside of my front teeth a few years ago from green tea that luckily was not visible to others, and fortunately the dentist was able to remove it.

    Reply
  4. Dee Sallows
    June 1, 2014

    Of course green tea stains teeth. Everything you eat and drink stains your teeth to some extent. However, in my experience, and this might not be true for anyone else,
    the astringent properties of green tea are beneficial to the health of the gums, keeping plaque in check. It is a wonderful cleanser, keeps breath fresh, and if you brush regularly there should not be any problems.
    Again, this is just my experience.

    Reply
  5. Crystal Evans
    August 21, 2014

    Green tea does not leave a stain on the teeth. Instead, it take cares our nervous system.

    Reply
  6. Crystal Evans
    September 17, 2014

    From what I have observed, green tea does leave tea stain on teeth.

    Reply
  7. Dennis in Japan
    November 10, 2014

    To increase whiteness, eat raw:
    Strawberries
    Seeds and nuts
    Apples
    Celery and carrots
    Broccoli
    Hard Cheese
    Oranges
    Pears
    Milk/Yoghurt

    brush with baking soda

    Reply
    1. Ricardo Caicedo
      November 10, 2014

      Hi Dennis

      Thanks for commenting, and for the useful info.

      Have a nice day in Japan : )

      Reply
  8. khaled syfullah
    June 12, 2015

    It was not known to me that green tea stains teeth. I am a lover of green tea so that fact hurts me. I do not want to leave green tea because it has good nutritional value and brush can solve the stain problem.

    Reply
  9. Rainah
    February 10, 2016

    I think green tea caise more stain as compared to the other tea bcx green tea some how its acidic which etch the enamel and penetrate more to enamel infra structure. Please do correct me if im taking it wrong

    Reply
    1. Ricardo Caicedo
      February 10, 2016

      Hi Rainah

      Loose leaf tea is very low in acidity, I haven’t yet tasted a green tea that has a significant sour flavor.

      However, bottled tea is acidic, much like soft drinks, for example Coca Cola.

      Reply
  10. Joshua wrng
    September 3, 2017

    @Dennis, baking soda does work! πŸ™‚

    sometime i make a mixture of baking soda with regular toothpaste and use it for brushing. it helps a lot πŸ™‚

    Reply
  11. Tina
    September 16, 2017

    At my recent visit to the dentist he asked if I drink a lot of green tea. He didn’t just say “tea”, but specifically “green” tea. After confirming, I asked about this distinction. He explained that although black tea stains the teeth as well, it does it to a lesser extent because black tea drinkers usually add milk to their tea which reduces staining (to be more specific, milk proteins bind the tannins in tea which enhance the ability of chromogens – the pigments – to stick to the enamel). So I guess adding milk to your green tea would help πŸ˜‰

    Since this sounds about as attractive as drinking tea through a straw, we’re left with maintaining good oral hygiene (perhaps with some help of baking soda) and regular visits to the dentist who can physically remove the staining when it gets too bad.

    And one last note: nobody else inspects our teeth with such criticism as we do ourselves. So unless it’s really bad, don’t worry too much and just smile πŸ™‚ That’s usually all that the other people see πŸ™‚

    Reply
    1. Ricardo Caicedo
      September 16, 2017

      Thank you for your comment, Tina.

      Good tip, I’ll just smile and not worry too much πŸ™‚

      Reply
  12. Che
    December 11, 2017

    I drink 3 Times a day but After i drinking I brush immediately my teeth. And twice a year I visit my dental

    Reply

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