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A set of pearly white teeth isn’t just about appearing beautiful but is also a sign of healthy oral care routine. If you notice black stains on your teeth, it not just impacts your smile but could also be a potentially serious problem like tooth decay. Which is why most people, on noticing any black spot on their tooth, want to know how to remove the black stain from their teeth.

Causes of black spots on teeth

Wondering how you managed to get those stubborn black stains on your teeth? These black stains on your teeth could either be harmless discoloration or an underlying serious issue. The reason for these dark spots could be due to extrinsic or intrinsic causes1:

  1. Extrinsic causes of black stains comprise of foods or beverages that stain your teeth, excessive build-up of tartar that leads to dark stains, chewing tobacco, any damage to the enamel, or due to certain medication.

  2. Intrinsic causes are more to do with decay, cavities or any infection that affects the root or the innermost layer of your tooth.

Here are some of the most common causes:

  • Tooth decay or cavity

  • Injury to the affected tooth

  • Staining due to foods and beverages

  • Excessive intake of fluoride, a condition also known as fluorosis

  • Other medical conditions.

Signs and symptoms of black spots on your teeth

Depending on whether the cause for the black stain on your teeth is an intrinsic or extrinsic one, the symptoms would appear different.

  1. Intrinsic causes:

    The discolouration will begin from the inside of the tooth, and appear on the outside, if the black stain is caused by decay or infection.

  2. Extrinsic causes:

    If the black stain is caused by plaque or tartar build-up, then the black spots are more pronounced as the bacteria attacks the enamel. This causes additional spots or discolouration as it weakens the tooth.

How to remove black spots from teeth?

If you’ve noticed such black stains and want to get rid of them, fret not. Your dentist can help remove such stains, in most cases2.

If the dark spots on your teeth are caused due to extrinsic factors and not a decay, here are the different options.

  1. You can opt for at-home teeth whitening products such as whitening strips or tooth bleaching kits etc. You could also try using tooth whitening toothpaste that includes fluoride, to brush twice a day. Ask your dentist to suggest you the right products.

  2. An in-office treatment called Dental prophylaxis, wherein the dentist uses a paste to remove the plaque and tartar, thus getting rid of surface stains.

  3. In cases where the stains are too stubborn and don’t seem to disappear or diminish, your dentist may suggest veneers. These are composite bonding shells that are placed over the front side of your tooth.

In cases where the black stains on your teeth are a result of a cavity, decay or infections, here are ways to treat it.

  1. For cavities and decays, your dentist will have to first remove the decayed part of your tooth and use a filling to patch it up. Some may also need tooth crowns when the decay is more serious and widespread.

  2. If an infection is the cause for any dark spots and it has spread to your pulp, then a root canal is the way to go ahead. This will ensure the infection in nipped in the bud and a tooth crown is fit over your tooth to restore its appearance.

Ways to prevent black stains on teeth

Teeth discolouration and getting black stains on your teeth are common issues and the best way to tackle them is by maintaining good oral hygiene. Practice the below steps for having healthy and sparkling teeth.

  1. Brush your teeth twice a day using a good fluoride toothpaste. For an ideal everyday toothbrush, try the Oral-B Vitality Series Electric Toothbrush. It comes with 2D technology that provides a comprehensive, all-round cleaning. Its round head efficiently oscillates and rotates between your teeth to remove plaque. What’s better? It has an embedded 2-minute professional timer that ensures that you brush your teeth for an optimal period of time.

  2. Use a good alcohol-based mouthwash that helps kill bacteria in your mouth and hence, fight bad breath.

  3. Floss is as important as brushing, so floss your teeth regularly.

  4. Schedule routine appointments with your dentist for cleaning sessions and also to check for any decays, cavities beforehand.

  5. Avoid teeth-staining foods such as coffee, tea and wine among others. If you really want to, dentists suggest drinking them using a straw. As for foods, you can try brushing your teeth soon after eating.

Don’t be disheartened if you notice black stains on your teeth even after you’ve been brushing and flossing. It is possible and common, and the reason could even be something like genetics that you can’t help. Stick to your oral care routine and speak to your dentist about teeth whitening options.


How can I remove black stains from my teeth?

The way in which you remove a black stain from your teeth will depend on its cause. If the cause is due to plaque or tartar build-up, teeth whitening products such as whitening strips and in-office treatments are options. Whereas if the black spot is due to a decay, then a visit to the dentist is the only possible way.

What causes black stains on teeth?

The extrinsic causes are due to teeth-staining foods and plaque and tartar build-up. Other more common causes of black stains on teeth are tooth decay or cavities.

How can I remove black stains from my teeth naturally?

You can start by avoiding foods that cause teeth staining such as tea, coffee, wine and other such foods. Maintaining a good oral hygiene routine that includes brushing with a fluoride toothpaste, flossing and using an alcohol-based mouthwash, is another way to remove black spots from teeth naturally.