What Is Dental Plaque and How to Dispose of It?
Most foods consist of sugars and starches. They interact with oral bacteria to form an invisible sticky or fuzzy film on the tooth surface. The film known as dental plaque re-forms very quickly. It, therefore, requires to be removed frequently. That is why the dentist near you advises you to properly brush your teeth twice every day. You must also floss at least once each day.
When dental plaque stays on the teeth for a long time, it hardens into tartar. In its hardened state, plaque is more difficult to remove. You will need professional dental cleaning by the dentist in Rocklin, CA, to remove it. Read on to find out how plaque affects your oral health and how to dispose of it.
What Are the Causes of Dental Plaque?
Our mouths contain bacteria that release acids to help in breaking down food. When you consume starchy or sugary foods, they mix with the acids and bacteria in the mouth. If you do not brush your teeth properly after eating, the foods, acids, and bacteria combine to form plaque. Poor oral hygiene causes plaque buildup.
You can detect the onset of plaque when you run your tongue over your teeth. You will feel a fuzzy or sticky film that clears when you brush your teeth. Other signs of plaque are chronic bad breath and red, tender gums that bleed after brushing.
Different Effects of Dental Plaque
Dental plaque buildup affects your oral health in various ways. The biofilm consists of potentially harmful oral bacteria that cause the issues below.
- Gum disease and infection
Plaque can develop under the gums leading to gum diseases and infections. Gingivitis, periodontal disease, and severe gum infections called periodontitis are complications of plaque. If left untreated, they can lead to cardiovascular issues and even tooth loss.
- Tooth infection
An abscessed tooth is the effect of plaque on the tooth and its supporting structures. When a tooth is severely decayed, or the gum is infected, bacteria cause a pus pocket to form around the tooth. A tooth abscess may lead to endocarditis and bacterial meningitis.
- Dental decay, cavities, and tooth loss
Your teeth are protected from cavity-causing bacteria by the teeth’s enamel. The film of plaque over teeth contains acids that corrode this tooth enamel. It exposes the tooth to more bacteria. Your teeth start decaying, and over time, dental cavities form on them.
Cavities are small holes on the tooth that weaken it and may even lead to tooth loss. If the cavities have not damaged the tooth much, tooth-colored fillings can be used to repair it. Several kids’ teeth have been saved through treatment of dental cavities and fillings in Rocklin, CA.
- Teeth discoloration
When plaque is not removed, it accumulates minerals from the saliva to form tartar. Tartar is off-white or yellow in color. Once tartar forms over your teeth, it causes them to be stained and discolored. The dentist near you can clear the discoloration to whiten your teeth again.
How to Dispose of Dental Plaque
Plaque forms on our teeth daily. Regular flossing and brushing remove plaque before it has a chance to accumulate. Use a suitable toothbrush and toothpaste that contains baking soda to get rid of plaque. You can use an electric toothbrush since they are more effective. Brush for two minutes at least twice every day to keep plaque from building up.
Tartar may form in places of your teeth that you may not reach using a toothbrush. A dental professional can help remove tartar using various dental tools and products. Ensure that you attend regular dental checkups and cleanings to keep plaque under control.
The dentist in Rocklin, CA, provides dental sealants to keep plaque from forming on the tooth surface. Fluoride treatments are also offered by the dentist to slow the growth of bacteria that causes plaque.
Contact us for treatment of dental cavities and fillings in Rocklin, CA, to ensure that your teeth are protected from further damage. Our pediatric dental team at Little Fish Dental works with children to maintain good oral health. We also offer preventive care to reduce the risk of dental and oral health issues. Visit us for the pediatric dentist in Rocklin, CA.