Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that builds up on your teeth. As you eat, the bacteria from plaque use sugars in your food to produce acids that cause tooth decay and gum disease. Thankfully, a dental hygienist can easily removeduring your dentist appointment.
However, if plaque and tartar are allowed to build up, it can lead to gingivitis (gum disease) and the more serious periodontal disease. The best way to maintain good oral health is to schedule an appointment with your Troy family dentist every six months. In this blog post, we will go over the dangers of untreated plaque buildup and how you can safeguard your smile from opportunistic bacteria.
Dangers of Untreated Dental Plaque
Plaque doesn’t just stay on your teeth. It can creep up and attack your gum line causing your gums to become red and inflamed. Once plaque has reached your gums, it can cause your teeth to loosen from your gum line and even cause bone and tooth loss.
Periodontitis (a severe form of gum disease) is irreversible and the damaging effects can only be slowed down by your family dentist through periodontal treatment. Your risk of also increases with untreated dental plaque.
Plaque not only affects your oral health, but it affects your overall health as well. Too much plaque can cause inflammation in the gums that could turn into gum disease. When plaque buildup reaches this point, it can travel to other parts of the body causing even more harm. The plaque can then clog arteries and lead to cardiovascular problems.
How to Prevent Dental Plaque
Plaque is constantly forming in your mouth and can cause numerous issues if not managed. Because plaque is colorless, it can be hard to notice it building up on your teeth. So what can you do to prevent dental plaque buildup? Using a fluoride mouthwash is a great option because it will kill bacteria and help prevent plaque build up. Other helpful options include brushing and flossing your teeth along with reducing how many sweets you eat.
Brush and Floss Teeth
Plaque leaves a film on your teeth that can easily be removed (and prevented) by brushing teeth twice a day. Floss at least once a day to get rid of any plaque and bacteria between teeth and at the gum line. Use an antibacterial mouthwash to help reduce plaque on your teeth and bacteria in your mouth.
Go easy on the sweets and starches. Bacteria feed off sugar, and eating too much of it increases your risk for plaque and tartar building up on your teeth which leads to tooth decay. Some candies, especially the sour kind, are acidic so they attack your enamel and make your teeth more sensitive and vulnerable to cavities.
Schedule Dentist Appointments
Visit your dentist every six months for a professional teeth cleaning and checkup. While brushing twice a day and flossing once daily keeps dental plaque at bay, a dental hygienist will be able to remove plaque and tartar hiding in between teeth or along the gum line. If dental plaque has been allowed to harden into tartar, only a dental professional will be able to remove it from your smile.
Taking the time to use the simple methods above to prevent dental plaque buildup will ultimately save your health in the long run. Talk to your dentist if you have any questions or concerns about dental plaque and tartar.
Contact Us Today
Dr. Kelly M. Giera DDS at Mosaic Dental is dedicated to helping patients maintain good oral health. If you are interested in scheduling an appointment for a teeth cleaning and oral exam, be sure to call our Troy dentists at (248) 528-2270.
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This blog post has been updated.