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Why do I have a dark spot on my tooth?

Dark spots on teeth can be from a variety of reasons including:

Cavities:

Cavities occur when the bacteria in your mouth feed on sugars and carbohydrates and produce acids that cause decay. Tooth decay can affect all parts of the tooth, including the enamel, dentin and pulp. Food debris, food stains and decay products cause the dark color. San Antonio dentist Dr. John Moore will remove all the bacteria and decay and replace the lost tooth structure using cosmetic dentistry with a tooth colored filling or crown.

Staining:

Every day eating and drinking contributes to the staining on the outside of the tooth, what we call extrinsic stains. A person may be more susceptible to this type of staining if their diet consists of dark colored beverages like coffee, tea and red wine. Although regular dental cleanings can reduce extrinsic stains, the most predictable way is to go through a whitening regimen. At Cosmetic Dental Associates we offer take home teeth whitening kits with custom fit bleaching trays and in office bleaching.

Amalgam fillings:

Amalgam fillings are also known as silver fillings. When a patient receives an amalgam filling over time corrosion and leakage occurs which actually changes the color of the tooth to a dark gray color. At CDA we offer tooth colored fillings, so nobody has to know about your filling except you and your dentist. We can replace your silver fillings with the tooth colored composite material or a Cerac restoration so you can have your white smile again.

Previous Root Canal Treatment:

Sometimes after a root canal a tooth may darken over time. This type of staining is different from stains on the outside of the tooth (extrinsic) in that it is actually coming from the inside of the tooth (intrinsic). So bleaching the enamel will not help. Internal bleaching is a treatment option for this condition. However the results with internal bleaching are not consistent. The most predictable and effective way to treat discoloration from inside the tooth is with porcelain crowns. A tooth may also have a dark spot if a root canal is needed. When the nerve in the tooth becomes infected, the infection can actually cause the nerve to die. When this happens we call it a necrotic pulp. A necrotic pulp can cause a dark spot on the tooth and is treated with a root canal and crown. With new technology and new materials a modern day root canal will not discolor you tooth.

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