A common question that pediatric dentists get asked is why some kids have yellow teeth. There is not one simple answer as different factors contribute to the color of teeth. In this video, Dr. Emily Hahn walks through those factors and how dentists evaluate children’s teeth as they get older.
One factor that contributes to teeth color is the various bacteria present in the mouth. This can create different colors of plaque, sometimes more orange or yellow than others. Another factor is that baby teeth are usually whiter than permanent teeth because of their density, which results in a color contrast between baby teeth and permanent teeth. This contrast can make the teeth look more yellow than they actually are. Generally, the best course of action is to wait until most permanent teeth have come in, particularly the front four, around eight years old, to see how the teeth look. If there is still a concern after that, brushing habits may be evaluated, or a whitening toothpaste may be used. While many younger children don’t like the minty flavor, they usually become more used to it once their permanent teeth are in.
It’s important to note that kids having yellow teeth is common. Yellow falls within the natural spectrum of normal teeth colors. If you have any questions about your child’s teeth coloring, talk to their dentist who will be happy to assist you.