Dental plaque is a common dental problem that can make teeth more susceptible to cavities and other dental issues. To reduce the amount of plaque that forms inside your mouth, it’s important to visit your dentist for regular cleanings so that your teeth stay strong and healthy.
What Is Dental Plaque Specifically?
You’ve likely seen toothpaste commercials that talk about how their products can reduce plaque buildups, but you still may find yourself asking the question, “What is dental plaque?” The simple answer is that dental plaque is a soft, sticky, and colorless film that forms on the teeth because of bacteria. Foods that contain high amounts of sugars and starches can also cause more of this film to occur and put your teeth at further risk for decay.
How Can I Tell If I Have a Lot of Plaque Buildup?
Due to the colorless nature of plaque, it’s often difficult to tell if you have a lot of plaque buildup. If your teeth feel sticky when you touch them with your tongue, you may have extensive buildup that should be addressed. Your gums may also become inflamed and bleed easily if plaque at the gum line causes gum disease (gingivitis). Your dentist can perform a thorough examination and let you know just how extensive the buildup and associated problems may be.
How Can I Prevent Extensive Plaque Formation?
Even though it’s impossible to completely prevent all plaque formation, taking some additional precautions in your life can help minimize buildups. Brushing twice a day and flossing at least once a day can help minimize plaque formation. Mouthwash that’s made from an antibacterial formula and doesn’t contain alcohol can also be used after each brushing to prevent extra plaque formation. It’s also best to limit foods that have a lot of sugar, such as candy and cake. Pasta, potatoes, and other high-starch foods should also be eaten in moderation if you want to avoid extra plaque buildup. Seeing your dentist at the recommended times and not skipping appointments can further help keep plaque formation to a minimum.
Dental plaque is a problem that affects everyone, but you can keep your mouth safe from many of the harmful effects by caring for your teeth at home properly, and visiting your dentist whenever you’re due for an appointment. If you would like to make an appointment with a friendly dentist in Ogden, UT, who works in a comfortable and professional environment, and can help keep your teeth and gums healthy for life, please contact North View Dental to schedule or ask any additional questions.