Dr. Nancy Burkhart
Lichen Lady
Tips: Mucosal disease patient tips for reducing stain on teeth

by Dr. Nancy Burkhart
  • Use a straw when drinking juices or liquids that stain the teeth.
  • Add milk to tea/coffee to lessen the stain of the product.
  • Rinse with clear water after eating or drinking a highly-pigmented food or drink.
  • Eat raw, crunchy type vegetables throughout the day.
  • Some teas may stain more than others, changing to a less staining type such as white tea can decrease the stain.
  • Hard cheeses may add a protective element to the teeth in fighting stains.
  • Drinking hot water with lemon or flavors added to hot water such as fennel seeds, coriander, and cumin (placed in a tea ball) can provide some of the same calming sensations as tea.
  • The patient who drinks tea throughout the day might consider drinking tea followed by warm water with lemon for the next cup or perhaps a light herbal tea.
  • Chewing gum with xylitol may diminish the stain by stimulating saliva to cleanse the mouth.
  • Using a tongue cleaner to remove the residue on the tongue and in the papillae. The stain is continually bathing the teeth when left in the tongue papillae. Using a tongue cleaner several times a day is optimal.
  • Specific instruction in brushing and flossing for the individual patient is necessary and may include an electric toothbrush as well as a manual brush along with an appropriate type of toothpaste that is recommended for the individual patient.
  • NOTE: mucosal disease patients may find that a soft manual brush will often be better for them than the electric toothbrushes. Lesions on the tongue may be too sensitive for an electric toothbrush and the manual will be gentle yet enable removal of film on the tongue. This applies to gingival lesions as well.
  • Toothbrushes do not clean in between the teeth, so daily use of floss is optimal and/or the interproximal brushes. We like the GUM interproximal brushes. 
Burkhart NW. Reduction of tooth stains: Patient education is vital to preventing tooth stain. RDH April 2015 5: (4) 

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