Dentist Castle Rock Talks about Plaque on TeethBy
Dentist Castle Rock Talks about Plaque on Teeth
Dental plaque is a sticky, colorless film that continually forms in between and on the surface of the teeth. It is formed, as in any biofilm, by colonizing bacteria trying to attach itself to a smooth surface of a tooth. It has been estimated that as many as 400 distinct bacterial species may be found in plaque. In addition to the bacterial cells, plaque contains a small number of epithelial cells, leukocytes, and macrophages. Dental plaque can be classified in several different ways. Plaque is classified as supragingival or subgingival based on its relationship to the gingival margin. Supragingival plaque is evident on the tooth above the gingival margin explains Dentist Castle Rock. Plaque can also be classified by its relationship to the tooth surface, as either attached or unattached plaque. Unattached subgingival plaque is more closely associated with the wall of the subgingival tissues than is the attached plaque. Inorganic components are also found in dental plaque; largely calcium and phosphorus which are primarily derived from saliva.
Symptoms of Plaque
Plaque is made up of invisible masses of harmful germs that live in the mouth and stick to the teeth. Some types of plaque cause tooth decay. Other types of plaque cause gum disease. Mild gingivitis does not cause any symptoms and so you may not realize that you have it. The gums look slightly swollen and reddened. Moderate gingivitis can cause more marked swelling and reddening of the gums. The gums often bleed a little when you clean your teeth. Uneasiness or pain from the gums is rare if you only have gingivitis. Periodontitis often does not cause any symptoms until an affected tooth becomes loose. However, in some cases, symptoms develop and may include: halitosis (bad breath), some pus formation in small pockets between teeth and gums, pain and difficulty eating, a foul taste in your mouth, affected teeth becoming loose and eventually falling out if not treated. Cavities are usually painless until they grow very large and affect nerves or cause a tooth fracture. If left untreated, a tooth abscess can develop. Untreated tooth decay also destroys the internal structures of the tooth (pulp) and ultimately causes the loss of the tooth says Dentist Castle Rock. Carbohydrates (sugars and starches) increase the risk of tooth decay. Sticky foods are more harmful than non-sticky foods because they remain on the surface of the teeth. Frequent snacking increases the time that acids are in contact with the surface of the tooth. The acids in plaque dissolve the enamel surface of the tooth and create holes in the tooth (cavities).
Removal of Plaque
If your gums appear healthy with no inflammation or redness, then twice daily brushing and proper daily flossing will break up the plaque that naturally accumulates on your teeth. Brushing with fluoride-based toothpaste will help to remove plaque from the surfaces of your teeth and floss or interdental cleaners will help to remove plaque between your teeth says Dentist Castle Rock. If you notice that your gums are red and inflamed, or that they bleed after you brush your teeth, it is important that you see your dentist. Gingivitis and early periodontitis can be controlled by routine professional teeth cleanings and more diligent brushing and flossing at home. If your dental professional observes an excessive buildup of plaque and calculus below the gum line, then a procedure called scaling and/or root planing may be necessary. This non-surgical procedure is used to remove plaque and calculus from around the roots of teeth and in the gum pockets. Scaling and root planing is performed in your dentist’s office. It is not uncommon for dentists to refer more advanced cases to a periodontist, a dentist specializing in gum disease.
Calculus aka Tartar
Even if you practice the best oral hygiene, there are bacteria in your mouth. These bacteria, along with proteins and food byproducts, form a sticky film called dental plaque. This film coats teeth. Plaque is most prevalent in areas that are hard to clean — like the back teeth — just along the gum line, and around fillings or other dental products. Calculus is hardened calcified plaque. It is sometimes called tartar. It sticks firmly to teeth. Generally, it can only be removed by a dentist or dental hygienist with special instruments. Unlike plaque, which is a colorless film of bacteria, tartar is a mineral buildup that’s fairly easy to see if above the gumline. The most common sign of tartar is a yellow or brown color to teeth or gums. The only way for sure to detect tartar and to remove it; is to see your dentist. Proper brushing, especially with a tartar control toothpaste, and flossing are necessary to reduce plaque and tartar buildup. Once tartar has formed, only your dentist or hygienist can remove it. The process for removing tartar is called scaling. During a scaling, the dentist or hygienist uses special instruments to remove tartar from your teeth above and below the gumline. A bigger problem arises if plaque is allowed to remain on your teeth and harden explains Dentist Castle Rock. That can happen after just 26 hours. When this occurs, the plaque hardens into tartar, or dental calculus. Because it has mineralized onto your teeth, tartar is far more difficult to remove than plaque. If tartar is not removed and gingivitis is left untreated, it can progress into a more serious form of gum disease. That more serious form is known as periodontitis.