What’s the best way to avoid a dentist and still get marijuana stains off my teeth? I really don’t want to get strung out with dental appointments and $300 whitening gel along with a list of things that need to be done to my teeth. My teeth are in decent shape but I brush regularly and the stains aren’t coming off. Thanks. Peter

Peter – Recent marijuana stains are not difficult to remove. If you’ve tried whitening toothpaste or high-strength over-the counter whitening gel without good results, your teeth might need extra attention to get clean.

A dentist won’t insist you receive teeth whitening. But you might need a dental cleaning from a hygienist. The dental tools used by a hygienist can remove coffee, tea, tobacco, and pot stains from your teeth. The stains are usually on the surface of your teeth and can be removed with the right tools.

When stains penetrate beneath the surface, they need to be removed with some form of whitening treatment from a dentist. Of course, you don’t have to receive whitening from a dentist, but stubborn stains won’t go away.

The Effects of Marijuana on Your Oral Health

In addition to the stains on your teeth, there is a component of marijuana, THC, that promotes the buildup of calculus on your teeth. The buildup promotes gum disease and tooth decay. The risk is lower for medicinal marijuana smokers.

It’s good practice to schedule dental cleanings and exams every six months. It can help control stains from smoking marijuana. It will also help to monitor your overall oral health. Many patients who don’t receive regular checkups often experience more serious dental issues that result in dental emergencies. An emergency is more costly than regular cleanings and exams.

A visit to a dentist is a good way to prevent more serious issues with your oral health. If you’re offered teeth whitening from a dentist, and you really don’t want it, just let your dentist or hygienist know you’re not interested. You’ll find that the best dentist for you is primarily concerned about your oral health and won’t pressure you to receive treatment you don’t want.

This post is sponsored by Colorado Springs dentist Dr. Joseph Rota.