Are Your Teeth Secretly Ageing You? Look Out For These Signs

Premature Aging 

Im a child of the 80s.  And lived when TV was filled with American shows.  

My mum’s favourite was Golden Girls, a show about fifty-something year olds and their adventures.  Kind of like Real Wives of ___ but set in the 80s. 

Well a few days back I saw this post.

Golden Girls vs JLo the 80s vs the 2020s

On the left if the Blanche, who was the “hot” one, on the left we all now JLo. Both 50 years old.  Pretty staggering difference. 

And the men are in on the act too. 

What a 45 year old looked like in the 90s.

I routinely have patients who look significantly younger than their age. 

The ability to look and feel youthful are so much more readily available than before.  The price of creams, medicines and procedures has fallen precipitously.  

And it’s not just that, there’s so much more knowledge about anti ageing. Just listen to Andrew Huberman or Peter Attia podcasts and there’s a wealth of information.

Historically it was only the really well off who could do something to reverse the signs of aging. 


Well, now we have a better handle on the causes of ageing and how to slow it down. 

Plus if you are unhappy with the impact of premature ageing it’s easier to address it. 

So with no further ado here’s the top 10 signs of ageing related to your teeth and smile. 

1. Discolouration

Over the years, our teeth naturally lose their youthful sheen. The enamel, which gives teeth their white colour, thins and reveals the darker dentin underneath. 

Plus the teeth pick up staining from food which causes them to get a yellow-orange-brown colour on teeth.

DIscoloured older looking teeth before and after whitening

2. Wear and Tear

Decades of chewing, grinding, and acidic impacts take their toll. The surfaces of teeth wear down, leading to changes in bite and potentially causing discomfort. 

This wear causes the teeth to become shorter, so an aged smile reveals less teeth when talking and smiling.

Worn teeth from a person showing less of their smile

3. Long in the tooth

Gum recession is a common issue as we age, exposing the roots of the teeth. This can lead to increased sensitivity and a higher risk of cavities.

Aggressive brushing and grinding can also cause a similar appearance prematurely.

Receding gums and extra long teeth

4. Increased Sensitivity

As gums recede and enamel erodes, teeth become more sensitive to temperature and sweetness.

People get a sharp pain when the stimulant eg cold hits the teeth. Luckily it is a fleeting qiuck pain, but it doesn’t make having an ice cream much fun.

5. Tooth Loss

Tooth loss is more prevalent with age due to a lifetime of stress on teeth and potential gum disease. 

This leads to a sullen and tired appearance with wrinkles and creases.

6. Dry Mouth

A reduction in saliva production, often exacerbated by medications, leads to dry mouth, which increases the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. 

Saliva plays so many important roles, but a dry mouth is often associated with bad breath. 

Signs of dry mouth

7. Cracks and Fractures

Minor cracks and fractures can develop in teeth over time due to various stresses. 

You can see these lines run along the length of front teeth and when they pick up staining they are more prominent.

Cracks on front teeth

8. Shifting Teeth

Changes in the jawbone and dental wear can cause teeth to shift. This not only affects the aesthetics of your smile but may also impact your bite.

9. Root Decay

Exposed roots are prone to decay and require different care than tooth crowns. Fluoride treatments and meticulous dental hygiene can protect these vulnerable areas.

10. Changes in Filling Material

Old fillings can weaken, discolour, or break down. Sometimes you’ll see metal shadows around crowns in the front of the mouth and the grey color of metal fillings shining through thin teeth. 

Amalgam filling shinning through

So what can you do?

That’s a post for next time.

Most dentists will be skilled at treating these issues so first thing first go see your dentist and have an open discussion with them. They can help you prevent further ageing of your teeth.