5 Reasons For Yellowing Of Baby Teeth And How To Prevent It

5 Reasons For Yellowing Of Baby Teeth And How To Prevent It

Noticing yellowing in your baby’s teeth can be concerning and raise questions about their oral health. While baby teeth are temporary, they play a significant role in a child’s development, serving as placeholders for adult teeth and aiding in speech and chewing. Read on for five reasons behind the yellowing of baby teeth and how to prevent it.

Inadequate Brushing

Inadequate brushing is a leading cause of yellowing teeth in children. Plague and food particles accumulate on the teeth without proper brushing, leading to discolouration.

How To Encourage Healthy Brushing Habits

Begin oral care early, even before your baby’s first tooth appears, by gently wiping their gums with a soft, damp cloth. Once teeth emerge, use a small, soft-bristled toothbrush and a rice grain-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. Turn brushing into a game or sing songs to keep your child engaged for the recommended two minutes. Children often need more dexterity for thorough brushing around age seven or eight, so it’s important to supervise and assist them as needed.

Dietary Choices

What your child eats and drinks can significantly affect the colour of their teeth. High-sugar diets and certain beverages can promote bacterial growth and lead to tooth decay and discolouration.

Another cause for concern is ‘baby bottle tooth decay‘ – the decay that develops when baby teeth have prolonged contact with too much sugar. Never put your baby to bed with a bottle – unless the bottle contains only water. While milk is a good source of calcium, extended exposure to milk can damage tooth enamel.

How to Encourage Healthy Diet Habits

Offer water or milk instead of sugary beverages, and keep sugary treats to a minimum. Encourage snacks such as fruits, vegetables, and cheese. Cheese contains high levels of calcium and phosphate, which strengthen and mineralise teeth, and casein, which heals enamel. It also increases saliva production, which helps to wipe away food particles and neutralise toxic acids in the mouth. Teach your child to rinse their mouth with water after meals or snacks to help remove food particles and reduce the risk of plaque buildup.

Illness and Medications

Certain diseases and antibiotics, particularly during the early phases of tooth development, can lead to discolouration of baby teeth. Tetracycline, for example, is known to cause staining if taken by a mother during pregnancy or by a child in early childhood.

How To Tackle Tooth Discolouration Due To Illness And Medications

Always discuss the potential side effects of medications with your child’s healthcare provider. Ensuring your child has regular dental checkups can help catch and treat dental issues early.


Fluorosis is a cosmetic condition caused by excessive fluoride intake during the first eight years of life when most permanent teeth form. It may cause white spots or streaks on the teeth and, in extreme instances, yellow or brown discolouration.

How to prevent Fluorosis

Use only a smear of toothpaste for children under three and a pea-sized amount for children aged three to six. Teach your child to spit out toothpaste and not swallow it. If your tap water is fluoridated or you use fluoride supplements, discuss with your dentist whether your child needs additional fluoride.

Trauma or Injury

Trauma to baby teeth, such as a fall or a knock to the mouth, can damage the internal tissue of the tooth or disrupt the formation of the underlying adult tooth, leading to discolouration.

How To Prevent Dental Injuries

Minimise the risk of falls and injuries by childproofing sharp corners and hard surfaces. Encourage using protective gear like helmets when your child is biking, skating, or engaging in sports. If your child experiences dental trauma, consult a dentist as soon as possible to assess and minimise any damage.


Parents may be concerned about baby teeth yellowing, but understanding the potential causes and implementing preventive measures can help maintain their child’s oral health. Key strategies include establishing good dental hygiene habits early, being mindful of dietary choices, monitoring fluoride intake, and protecting your child from oral injuries. Regular dental checkups are essential for early identification and addressing dental issues. Taking proactive steps can help ensure your child’s teeth remain healthy and bright, paving the way for a lifetime of good oral health.

At Affinity Dental, we are dedicated to making dental care accessible and affordable for you and your family. When you choose one of our dental plans, you can access a vast network of over 2,000 skilled and professional dentists. Our benefits include mouth examination, scale and polish, intraoral radiographs, infection control, and more. Contact Affinity Dental for helpful advice on which dental plan best suits you and your family, and visit a network Dentist for more ways to maintain good oral hygiene in children.

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