A member asked:

What's the cause of presence of black or yellow and sometime even white color of the tooth with dental caries?

14 doctors weighed in across 6 answers
Dr. Peter Kurzweil answered

Specializes in Internal Medicine

Is black, it's worse: Dental caries do not cause the tooth to become black. That usually means the dental root or nerve has been destroyed. Get ye to the dentist - now. If it is white, off-white, very light yellow--sounds normal, unless the surrounding teeth are a different shade.

Answered 12/29/2022


Dr. Richard Ruden answered

Specializes in Dentistry

Staining: The color of the decay varies depending on the amount of the decay present and where on the tooth the decay is located..The extent of the decay through the enamel will cause different transparencies and thus different colors.

Answered 8/20/2013


Dr. Joseph Capista answered

Specializes in Cosmetic Dentistry

Decalcified enamel : When a tooth decays the enamel looses calcium and decalcifies and changes color

Answered 7/5/2014


Dr. Arman Roksar answered

Specializes in Dentistry - Prosthodontics

Decay: Caries or decay can be almost any color. When Bactria decalcify the enamel of a tooth and start "eating" the organic materials of the tooth, the by product is an inorganic material that can be most any color.

Answered 11/25/2016


Dr. Charles Lamberta answered

Specializes in

Dental caries: The process of decaying from within the tooth is causing these discolorations

Answered 11/14/2014


Dr. Nilesh Dalal answered

Specializes in Periodontics

Spots?: Are these spots or patches, the white color could be due to hypocalcification or low mineral content of the tooth and the causes vary from genetics to sickness in childhood to low or excessive fluoride in the drinking water. The yellow color could be due to plaque or stains and black could be due to dental caries or stains.

Answered 10/3/2015



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