Plaque buildup, a sticky layer that can coat our teeth, is as serious source of trouble. Unless removed or controlled, this bacterial byproduct could be responsible for cavities, gum disease, bad breath, and more. In today’s blog, your Astoria, NY, dentist explains how sometimes our daily habits can lead to severe buildup, and what we can do to safeguard our oral health!
The Dangers of Buildup
When we consume foods and drinks high in sugar and starch, and don’t practice good oral hygiene, this leaves particles behind on and between our teeth. Over time, bacteria will begin to break down these particles, a process that elevates the levels of oral acidity in the mouth and also creates sticky layers of plaque buildup. Unless removed, plaque buildup worsens over time and eventually could calcify into tartar. This weakens tooth enamel, eroding this protective layer and enabling cavities to form. The buildup also irritates and inflames gum tissue, increasing the risk of gingivitis and gum disease, as well as bad breath and visible teeth stains.
Preventing the Buildup
What can be done to prevent the buildup? First, try to cut back on foods high in sugar and starch, and consume fewer beverages with high amounts of sugar. In addition, take time every day to brush your teeth for two minutes when you wake up and again before bed. You also need to floss thoroughly before bed. These actions help limit how much plaque can form on your smile and improves overall oral health.
Removing Buildup with Dental Cleanings
While a better diet and daily brushing and flossing can limit the severity of buildup, these actions do not remove the layers that have already formed. In fact, the only way to actually remove plaque and tartar is with a routine dental cleaning. A cleaning involves the use of a manual tool and ultrasonic scaling device to break up these layers and completely remove them. We then polish the teeth for a smoother finish and brighter appearance. Removing these layers also freshens the breath and helps improve oral health. You should undergo this treatment about once every six months, or possibly once every three to four months if you have high risk factors for gum disease. If you have any questions about keeping your smile free of periodontal disease and plaque buildup, then contact our team today. We would love to work with you to help you enjoy optimal oral health.
Schedule Your Dental Cleaning Today!
If you haven’t seen us lately for a thorough dental cleaning, then set up a visit today. For more information on our preventive treatment options, then schedule a consultation, call Jeffrey Leibowitz, DDS, in Astoria, NY, today at 718-728-8320.