black lines on teeth black lines on teeth

7 Causes of Black Lines on Teeth and Preventive Methods

Oral health is important for overall health and well-being. The black lines on teeth occur due to multiple reasons. Whatever the cause might be, the result is the deterioration of your beautiful teeth.

As your self-confidence is connected with your appearance, oral care is necessary. When you lose your attractive smile, it also affects your relationships.

Therefore, it is essential to understand the various causes of black lines on teeth and prevent or treat them properly.

1. Causes of Black Lines on Teeth

The black stains at the neck of the tooth in the form of a line are the black lines on teeth. It occurs in many forms. It can be dots, lines of various thicknesses, or dashed.

These black lines also form due to tartar or dental calculus. When oral plaque is left uncleaned, it absorbs different minerals and forms a crusty layer of tartar.

You can remove such tartar formation by professional cleaning, which involves dental scaling and root planing using special dental tools. Many people confuse black lines with cavities. Both are different. Cavities can also cause black lines.

black lines on teeth
Photo by steheap/Unlimphotos

A healthy smile is lost when tartar or cavities are present. The black lines or stains can also occur due to other reasons like receding gums.

The normal color of teeth is whitish-yellow or whitish-grey. 

The upper layer of the tooth is known as the enamel. The layer below the enamel is known as dentin. The color of your dentin can be seen through the enamel. This is how your teeth have hues of grey or yellow, which is the color of the dentin.  

As you age, the color of your teeth fades. This is normal. However, the formation of black lines or tartar buildups is primarily due to bad dental habits.

Black lines form slowly. So if you notice such stains, consult a  dentist.

2. 7 Significant Causes of Black Lines on Teeth

2.1. Poor Oral Hygiene

Black lines are often formed due to poor oral hygiene. If you are not brushing and flossing your teeth daily, plaque accumulates and leads to the formation of tartar.

Your teeth will eventually have tartar buildups and finally, black teeth or black lines appear on teeth.

2.2. Tobacco

Using tobacco is injurious to your teeth. It creates stains and makes your teeth look dirty. Avoid smoking or chewing tobacco to maintain dental hygiene.

2.3. Intake of Sugar in Large Quantities

Consumption of food that contains starch and sugar adversely affects your dental health.

2.4. Drinking Wine and Coffee

Drinking wine and coffee leaves stains on your teeth. Food and drinks like red wine or coffee leave a dark coloration.

black lines on teeth
Photo by cottonbro studio/ Pexels Copyrights 2021

Soft drinks and alcohol are bad for teeth. Also, having too many candies and not maintaining dental hygiene can create stains.

2.5. Damaged Enamel

If your tooth enamel is damaged, it can easily get stained. Cavities can destroy enamel and make holes in the enamel.

2.6. Certain Medications

Consumption of certain medications can also create black lines on teeth. For instance, liquid iron supplements could discolor your teeth.

2.7. Tartar Buildup

black lines on teeth
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The formation of tartar gives your teeth discoloration. This can be removed by scraping off the tartar.

3. Symptoms of Black Lines on Teeth

3.1. Spots on Teeth

Generally, black lines form as a grey or brown spot on the teeth. Then it turns to black color. Gradually the intensity increases and stains the teeth.

Usually, black lines occur in the lower front teeth and on the molars. Sometimes holes are developed in teeth due to the destruction of the enamel.

3.2. Bad Breath

black lines on teeth
Photo by Benzoix/Unlimphotos

Bad breath is usually a symptom of many dental issues. It is important to check your teeth if you have bad breath.

3.3. Bleeding Gums

Sometimes red or swollen gums are a result of the accumulation of tartar on your teeth. Bleeding gums are a  symptom of black lines on teeth.

4. How to Remove Black Lines on Teeth?

Mild or intense, all kinds of tartar can be removed by a dentist. Other home remedies are not that effective. The dentist performs scaling and root planing to remove the black tartar from your teeth and gum line. Once tartar accumulates on your teeth, only a dental specialist can remove it.

Learn more about removing black lines on teeth.

Although removing black lines on teeth is a tiresome procedure, prevention is super easy. If you can follow some simple steps regularly, you can avoid spending time on a dentist’s chair. Good oral hygiene can prevent any abnormalities on your teeth, be it black lines or gum disease.

black lines on teeth
Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay Copyrights 2017

Here are some preventive measures:

4.1. Brushing

Brushing your teeth daily helps not only in maintaining oral hygiene but also in removing plaque. An electric toothbrush is more effective in cleaning your teeth. You should brush your teeth twice a day.

4.2. Choosing the Right Toothpaste

Using calculus removal toothpaste is also beneficial. The fluoride present in such toothpaste kills germs or bacteria in your mouth. In the absence of plaque-causing bacteria, there is less or no chance for cavities and black line formation.

4.3. Flossing

Flossing is necessary to remove any stuck particles on your teeth. Using just a toothbrush cannot reach each nook and corner of the teeth. Flossing regularly makes your teeth clean and avoids issues like bad breath.

4.4. Using Mouthwash

black lines on teeth
Photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya on Unsplash Copyrights 2021

Use an antiseptic mouthwash to kill all the bacteria and germs present in your mouth. This prevents plaque formation and ultimately black tartar.

4.5. Avoid Sugar

Regulate the intake of sugary food. The bacteria present in your mouth release harmful acids when in contact with sugar or starch. It is not necessary to completely avoid such food.  However, always remember to clean your mouth after consuming sugary substances.

4.6. Limit Caffeine Beverages

Limit consuming drinks like coffee, black tea, wine, and soft drinks.

4.7. Avoid Tobacco

Avoid using tobacco. If you want a white smile be sure to keep tobacco away from your life.

4.8. Schedule Regular Dentist Visit

Visit your dentist at least twice a year to check on your teeth.

black lines on teeth
Photo by kuprevich /Unlimphotos

5. Conclusion

The black lines on your teeth can steal your white smile. Therefore, prevent such a condition and consult a dentist if required. Practice good oral hygiene and protect your smile.

Black lines need professional treatment. Don’t waste your time on treatments at home. With an accurate diagnosis, a dental professional can help you.

6. Frequently Asked Questions

6.1. Is black tartar bad?

Yes. Black lines or tartar build-up can cause gum problems, bad breath, and dirty-looking teeth.

6.2. How do I get rid of black lines on my teeth?

Tartar or black lines can be removed by a dentist. However, keep in mind the preventive measures to prevent your teeth from building black lines.

6.3. Can lemon remove tartar?

Yes, lemon can help to remove existing tartar to some extent and also prevent further build-up.

Read more about dental health care.

7 Most Common Dental Problems
Icy Health

Proofread by:

Dr. Foram Bhuta

Dentist (B.D.S)

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