Three Common Causes of Yellow Teeth in Children

Yellow teeth in children can be a cause of worry. You might wonder if they're indicative of a wider problem, or a sign that you're doing something wrong. Children themselves may be distressed by the appearance of their teeth, particularly as they reach school age. Teasing from other children could damage their self-esteem and cause insecurities about the way they look.

There are a few common causes of yellow teeth in children. Depending on the cause, you may be able to change the appearance of your children's teeth with better oral hygiene or whitening toothpastes. In other cases, it's not so easy, and you'll need to consult a dentist about possible treatment options.

1. Antibiotic use

Certain antibiotics have been shown to cause permanent darkening or yellowing of the teeth in children aged under 10. If your child was prescribed a Tetracycline-based antibiotic, like Doxycycline, when they were young, then this may be the culprit. Most doctors will not prescribe these antibiotics to young children unless absolutely necessary. Unfortunately, there's not much that can be done about the staining while your child is still young. Brushing teeth regularly will help to reduce the chance of any further staining, and bleaching treatments will be an option once they're older.

2. Genetics

There's a commonly held belief that yellow teeth are the result of not brushing properly, but that's actually not always the case. The colour of teeth can vary greatly from person to person, and genetics play a big role. If you or your partner have teeth which appear yellow, then chances are that your child will too. This is nothing to worry about from a health point of view, but it can still lead to teasing.

You should first let your child know that there's nothing wrong with the way their teeth look, and that everyone is different. If this doesn't seem to help, then you could try using a gentle whitening toothpaste. Consult your dentist first, as harsher varieties won't be suitable for kids. When your child is older, you can start to explore professional whitening options like bleaching or laser whitening.

3. Staining from food and drink

If your child's teeth used to appear white, but have become yellow over time, then there's a good chance that staining is to blame. Certain foods, like citrus fruits, berries, tomato sauces, fizzy drinks and sweets can damage the tooth enamel and lead to a yellow appearance. Brushing regularly and thoroughly, as well as limiting consumption of these foods will help reduce staining.

You could make a chart to help your child understand which foods they shouldn't eat too often. If you're worried about how well they're brushing, try investing in a musical toothbrush. This plays a tune that shows your child how long they need to brush for, and the novelty can help to get kids excited about cleaning their teeth. For more information, contact a dental clinic like Precision Dental Care @ Kingston.