A child’s teeth may not always come in pearly white. They may come in stained with either a yellow or green tinge. This happens for a variety of reasons – many of which are sometimes a complete surprise to parents.
The most common causes of yellow or green-stained teeth in children are antibiotic use, certain health conditions, and exposure to metals.
Here’s a breakdown of each.
These types of prescription drugs will disfigure a child’s teeth if they’re administered before the age of 10. In most cases, teeth will come in with yellow stains and banding – and unfortunately, such teeth can’t be whitened. Once the child has all of his or her permanent teeth in, the only option to fix those stained teeth is with crowns or veneers.
Cystic Fribrosis is a health condition that can also stain teeth. The disease is caused by mutations of the cystic fibrosis transmembrane regulator protein gene, which is believed to play a role in tooth enamel formation and mineralization.
The defective gene in cystic fibrosis also causes the body to create unusually thick and sticky mucous that clogs lungs and obstructs the pancreas, halting movement of enzymes to the intestines that are needed for breakdown and absorption of food.
Exposure to metal
A green stain on your child’s teeth can be caused by exposure to some metals such as nickel or copper. Stains can even be absorbed into dental plaque by inhaling fumes from metallic salts. Discoloration can vary from green to bluish-green to brown, depending on which metal your child is exposed to.
If you notice that your child has yellow or green stains on his or her teeth, it’s important to see me immediately. While I won’t be able to fix the teeth until all of the permanent onces have come in, it’s important that I keep an eye on the condition and start developing a plan of action on how to treat it.