What Are Those Black Spots on Your Teeth? It’s Not Always a Cavity!

What Are Those Black Spots on Your Teeth? It’s Not Always a Cavity!

August 7, 2023

What Is a Cavity?

It is a small hole or decayed area in a tooth, also known as dental caries or tooth decay. A combination of factors causes cavities. Usually, the bacteria in the mouth feed on sugars from foods you consume to produce acids. The acids, bacteria, saliva, and other food debris in your mouth combine to form a sticky substance called plaque, which begins damaging teeth over time. This process happens over time, with the darkening of teeth of black spots as an indication of a cavity developing.

​What Are Those Black Spots on Your Teeth That Aren’t Cavities?

Usually, when people notice black spots on teeth, the first thought that crosses them is that they have a cavity. However, there are other instances where such black spots are not because teeth decay. Still, it would be best if you only concluded this after you visited a dental clinic in Calgary for a proper diagnosis. A dentist must assess the spots, perform any necessary tests, and recommend appropriate treatment or cosmetic options to address the issue.

​Common Causes of Black Spots on Teeth

Some instances of black spots on teeth that aren’t cavities are:

  1. Extrinsic staining from foods and beverages, like tea, red wine, coffee, and dark-colored berries – usually on the surface of the teeth. Over time, these stains may appear as black or dark spots.
  2. Poor oral hygiene for prolonged periods allows plaque to harden into tartar and form dark spots in some portions of your mouth.
  3. Prolonged use of tobacco, usually through chewing and smoking.
  4. Variations in tooth structure or enamel thickness, naturally causing darker or grayish teeth, sometimes appear as black spots.
  5. Tooth decay beneath the enamel surface makes them difficult to detect visually. Hidden cavities can cause discoloration, and black spots may become visible as the decay progresses.
  6. Older or poorly done dental restorations, such as amalgam (silver) fillings – can sometimes discolor teeth or leave black spots on the adjacent tooth structure. It can happen due to leakage or corrosion of the filling material over time.
  7. Dental trauma, such as fractures or cracks – resulting from the accumulation of blood or other tissue fluids within the tooth structure.

​How to Get Rid of Black Spots in Your Teeth?

Before removing black spots on your teeth, you must first uncover the cause. Different black spots should be handled uniquely to achieve excellent results without harming the tooth structure or surrounding soft tissues. Some solutions for black spots on teeth are:

  1. Professional teeth cleaning in Calgary – is an ideal solution for overcoming black spots due to extrinsic staining from foods, beverages, or tobacco use. A dental hygienist or dentist effectively removes plaque and tartar, which tremendously realizes whiter and brighter teeth.
  2. Teeth whitening in Calgary – is perfect for when the black spots are caused by general tooth discoloration or surface stains that cannot be removed through regular cleaning. Professional teeth whitening procedures may lighten the overall tooth color and minimize the appearance of intrinsic and extrinsic black spots.
  3. Dental restorations – dentists may employ tooth fillings or perform root canal treatment when the black spots are due to deep decay.
  4. Replacement of old restorations – if you have black spots because of deteriorating or discolored dental restorations, such as amalgam fillings, the dentist may recommend replacing them with newer, more aesthetically pleasing materials, such as tooth-colored composite resin fillings or porcelain restorations.
  5. Cosmetic dentistry – for some cases, intrinsic tooth discoloration alongside other cosmetic concerns, cosmetic dentistry procedures like dental bonding, veneers, or crowns are excellent for improving the teeth’ appearance and covering the black spots. This alternative is perfect if the back spots are too stubborn to come out with teeth cleaning and whitening efforts.

When to Be Concerned About A Cavity

Although not all dark spots we encounter at Poplar Dental point to cavities, some do. When you have a cavity, you experience other symptoms such as:

  • Tooth sensitivity to hot and cold air, foods, and drinks
  • Lingering pain or discomfort when you chew
  • Bad breath emanating from the darkened tooth
  • Swollen gums around the target tooth

All services performed by a general dentist

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