As we get older, our teeth naturally become darker.
If you drink tea, coffee, red wine or consume other foods and drinks with strong colourings, your teeth may become discoloured earlier in your life.
Another major cause of discolouration is smoking, which can make your teeth appear yellow.
Tooth decay, fillings and tartar build-up (a hardened form of plaque, which is formed by a film of bacteria on the surface of your teeth) can also contribute to discolouration.
Teeth whitening products can help to lighten your teeth. They usually contain chemicals called hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. When these chemicals break down, oxygen gets into the hard outer surface (enamel) of your teeth, which whitens them. The whitening effects can last from a few months up to three years. This varies from person to person.
Simple ways to improve the appearance of discoloured teeth include:
• Brushing regularly with a fluoride toothpaste.
• Stopping smoking.
• Cutting down on food and drinks that can stain your teeth, such as tea, coffee and red wine.
• Visiting your dentist/hygienist regularly. He or she can scale and polish your teeth to remove any tartar that has built up.