Dental plaque, a sticky film that accumulates on the surface of teeth, can be incredibly damaging and lead to tooth decay and other oral health issues.
It is important to properly remove dental plaque whenever it begins to form in order to prevent it from attacking dental enamel.
How to remove dental plaque at home
When dental plaque is removed in a timely manner, it does not pose much of a threat to our oral health. However, dental plaque can be concerning if it is not properly removed and remains for an extended amount of time.
Most dental plaque can be removed by brushing your teeth. However, since dental plaque can form constantly throughout each day, it is important to brush several times a day.
Additionally, be sure to brush every part of the mouth, not just the most visible areas. While it may seem obvious, many fail to properly brush the harder-to-reach areas of the teeth, along with the gums, which is where dental plaque has the highest tendency to accumulate.
Floss and use mouthwash
As mentioned, dental plaque forms when substances found in food, drinks and other consumables combine with the natural bacteria in our mouth. Since food particles have a tendency to wedge in between teeth, it is normal to have dental plaque in those areas.
Subsequently, it is important to floss and use mouthwash at least once a day to remove dental plaque from in between teeth and other areas that cannot be reached by a toothbrush.
Fluoride helps strengthen enamel and fight off attacks on enamel by bacteria found inside dental plaque. By using fluoride, dental plaque is far less damaging to our teeth.
Not only does the fluoride found in fluoride-based toothpastes and mouthwashes help remove dental plaque, but it also helps protect our enamel when plaque does attack our teeth, and it can remineralize some damaged enamel if erosion has begun.
Avoid harmful foods and drinks
As mentioned, dental plaque forms when sugar, starches and other harmful substances combine with bacteria found in the mouth. In order to prevent dental plaque from accumulating in the first place, try avoiding harmful foods and drinks.
If giving up coffee or sugar is simply not an option, be sure to take extra precaution and brush, floss and use mouthwash more frequently throughout each day in order to remove any dental plaque that starts to form.
Do not use tobacco products
Tobacco products can lead to a significant buildup of dental plaque, which puts those who use tobacco at an increased risk of developing cavities, suffering from gum disease and eventually losing their teeth earlier than desired.
Anyone who uses tobacco products and is worried about accumulating too much dental plaque should consider quitting tobacco use. For those who are unable to do so, be sure to take extra caution and ensure a good oral hygiene routine is in place to prevent a buildup of dental plaque.
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