Why Are My Crowns Turning Yellow?

I had two CEREC crowns done and am a bit frustrated. I’ve only had them a few months and they’re already picking up stains. I do drink coffee, but no one told me not to. Is this something I am going to have to give up drinking coffee? If so, I wish they would have told me that. Is there a procedure I can have that will allow me to drink coffee? Will I be able to whiten them back to their original color?


Dear Stan,

A CEREC Machine
When Should You Get a CEREC Crown?

Teeth whitening will only work on natural tooth structure, so I would not count on that to do any good. Sometimes people are told they are getting porcelain crowns, when their dentist actually gives them a composite resin. This will pick up stains very quickly. I would not think that is what happened to you because you mentioned that you had it done with CEREC crowns which mills from blocks of porcelain.

The porcelain has a protective glaze which protects it from staining. In fact, it should be more stain resistant than your natural teeth. If they are picking up stains, then something happened to damage the glazing. Some possibilities are if your hygienist used something like a power prophy jet or acidulated fluoride. If this happened then, they should bear the responsibility of repairing this.

If they didn’t do this, it is possible you used something that caused some damage to your porcelain crowns. Most whitening toothpastes use abrasives to remove the stains on your teeth. While it does remove some surface stains, the abrasives scratch both your tooth enamel as well as any dental work you have. This means they will quickly begin to pick up stains.

As for your coffee drinking, as long as you get the protective glaze back on your dental crowns, you should have no problem drinking coffee. I do recommend you use a safe whitening toothpaste, however, designed specifically for dental work. Supersmile whitening toothpaste will remove all the surface stains without causing any damage to your teeth or dental work.

This blog is brought to you by Gilbert Dentist Dr. Matt Roper.