FROM THE BLOG
Dental Plaque & How to Get Rid of It | Family Dentist Campbelltown
We all experience dental plaque to some degree. But, it’s how it’s managed that makes a difference to your oral health.
As your dentist in Campbelltown, we know all about dental plaque. In this article, we’ll be sharing some information on it with you. What it is, how it affects your teeth and how to get rid of it!
What Is Dental Plaque?
The slimy film that coats your teeth is plaque. Scientifically, we refer to plaque as a biofilm. A biofilm is a group of living microbes, held together by a sticky layer of a chemical compound. This sticky layer assists in attaching these microbes to your teeth. Here, they develop into flourishing microcolonies, (and cause havoc in your mouth).
Plaque is light yellow or off-white and can your dentist will be able to spot it during your dental check-up.
The Cause of Dental Plaque
Think of your mouth as an ecosystem. When we eat and drink, and breathe, a range of bacteria and organisms enter our mouths. A balance exists but can be thrown out when levels of certain bacteria become too high. This results in dental plaque.
Foods that are high in starches and sugar encourage plaque. They contribute to the overdevelopment of bacteria that results in plaque.
Plaque is common between the teeth and under the gum line. These are the easiest places for deposits to collect.
How It Affects Your Teeth
Plaque causes many oral health problems. The bacteria that plaque is made up of produce acids when we eat. These acids break down the enamel on our teeth and leads to issues like cavities. Cavities caused by plaque can also take place under our gums, where the support bases of our teeth are broken down.
Bad breath and the yellowing appearance of teeth are both brought on to by dental plaque. And the early stages of Gingivitis too!
The worst effect plaque has on our teeth is the mineralisation of it, into tartar. If left to its own devices, plaque turns into a hard substance that is firmly adhered to our teeth. This yellowy-brown deposit needs removal by a dentist. Tartar that remains on your teeth over the long-term can result in serious gum disease.
Preventing Dental Plaque
Plaque is unavoidable, so the most important thing you can do is keep up a good dental health routine. This stops it from accumulating and become a bigger oral health issue than it needs to be.
Brush Your Teeth
Brushing your teeth, twice daily is a good habit to observe. It will help protect your teeth and gums from the damaging bacteria in dental plaque. This is especially important after consuming foods high in sugar.
Unfortunately, brushing your teeth is not enough. You need to practice proper brushing technique and brush for at least 2 minutes each time. Electric toothbrushes make it easier to get the technique right. They are an effective toothbrush choice for battling plaque. At Marketfair Dental, we recommend them.
Flossing is underrated. Brushing cleans the surface of your teeth but is unable to get into those hard to reach places. Flossing does the job by removing plaque from between your teeth and under the gum line. It is an important step in a good dental hygiene routine that you mustn’t skip!
Use A Mouth Rinse
In addition to brushing and flossing, use a mouth rinse product. This will help you tackle plaque and the problems it brings with it. Research has shown that mouth rinse reduces plaque and gingivitis. This is when you use it often, and in conjunction with daily brushing and flossing
Chlorhexidine, probiotic, and essential and herbal oils are active ingredients used in many mouth rinses. Whilst CHX is prescription only, many rinses are available over the counter. To find the best one for you, it’s best to consult your dentist.
Dental Plaque Treatment
The ongoing treatment of plaque is done through your daily dental hygiene routine. But, if you have a lot of plaque build-up that hardens into tartar, you will need to visit your dentist to have it removed.
It’s important to visit your dentist on a regular and ongoing basis for check-ups and cleans. Because, even if you stick to a good dental health routine at home, there are still hard to reach places in your mouth. With consistent visits, your dentist can help you stay in control of plaque and tartar. This is very important for your dental health.
If you want your teeth and gums to last a lifetime, it’s important to fight plaque build-up. There are effective ways to do this. And you can find them in your daily dental hygiene habits.
Getting rid of plaque results in a cleaner mouth that is less prone to tooth decay and gum disease. It is a major step toward good dental health.
We’d love to meet you and your family or to welcome you back for your next check-up.
Call Campbelltown’s no gaps dentists and make your appointment.