Knowing what dental plaque can do to your teeth is fundamental in order to improve your oral health. If you are looking to keep and stay with your natural teeth for as long as you can, then effectively dealing with and keeping your teeth clean from plaque will be very useful and worthwhile for you!
As always, we have asked our Los Algodones dentists about what plaque is, what it does, how we can prevent it and more!
What is dental plaque, why does it form?
Dental plaque is a sticky and colorless film made of bacteria and food. It is always a threat in our mouths that we can never really get rid of forever. As such it is important we engage in daily brushing and flossing.
This film forms when bacteria has food at its disposal to fuel its growth. This is typically done through sugary and starchy foods. When dental plaque is in contact with our teeth, it starts damaging and wearing down our tooth enamel, so it leads to cavities, tooth decay and tooth sensitivity.
It develops into tartar
When dental plaque is not cleaned and left to be for two to three days, then it hardens into tartar. Tartar, also known as dental calculus, is a hard surface which cannot be brushed off by the toothbrush.
Moreover, it is known to irritate and make your gums red and puffy. Also offering a porous and easy to adhere surface for more plaque and food to get stuck to.
Once plaque develops into tartar, it is only possible to remove it all with a professional dentist. Not only do they have the right tools for the job but also years of experience doing so. A capable and experienced dentist is able to get through all the spots and remaining areas that need cleaning, accomplishing a professional and clean job.
Ways to prevent plaque buildup
In order to deal with plaque, we must engage in excellent oral hygiene basics. As such, daily brushing and flossing is needed as well as including some other habits:
- Brushing. This is your first line of defense against plaque. By brushing your teeth before and after going to bed, you are making sure the bacteria has no real chance to cause a ruckus inside your mouth. Los Algodones dentists recommend taking your time brushing every part of your mouth, taking at least 2 minutes in every session.
- Flossing. Of course, brushing enough won’t do if you want to get rid of all the plaque and food buildup. Dental floss is a great tool for cleaning in-between your teeth, a place where the toothbrush finds a really hard time getting to.
- Mouthwash. Rinsing your mouth can prove phenomenal when you know the benefits of it. The first step is to get a therapeutic mouthwash rather than a cosmetic one. The second is to use it at your advantage after eating or drinking something sweet as to keep your teeth more protected throughout the day.
- Fluoride. Making use of fluoride works wonders when it comes to halting tooth decay. There is fluoride in toothpaste, mouthwash and even tap water. So by choosing products that have it as well as keeping yourself hydrated will work wonders for your teeth.