Dentists have a lot of information at their disposal; it’s part of what makes them so good at their jobs. However, when it comes time to communicate about oral health with the average person, that can sometimes cause problems. It can be a little bit difficult to gauge what most people know and what they don’t.
For example, plaque is something that comes up often when dentists advise their patients. While most people are aware that it isn’t a good thing, it often goes unsaid exactly what it actually is.
In an effort to make dental communication easier, here’s what you should know about what plaque actually is, why it’s a problem, and what you can do to keep it at bay.
What Is Plaque?
As you might know, plaque is a thin film that can form on the teeth. If it’s been a minute since you last brushed, you may notice your teeth feel “rough” when you run your tongue across them. In some cases, you may even be able to see a little bit of white or yellow gunk on your smile. That’s plaque.
To be more specific, plaque is an accumulation of bacteria on the teeth. As these bacteria grow, they create something called a “biofilm” that makes it resistant to antimicrobials. Both gum disease and tooth decay are a product of these bacterial colonies.
How to Prevent Plaque Buildup
Odds are, even if you didn’t know exactly what plaque was, you probably had some idea of how to prevent it. Still, it’s a good idea to review exactly what steps you should take to keep your oral health in good condition.
The most important thing is thorough dental hygiene. Brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash break down biofilm and kill bacteria. In this way, maintaining a solid and consistent dental routine is critical to preventing gum disease.
However, even if you brush well, there are likely plaque deposits in your mouth that you won’t be able to reach. For that, you’ll also need to make biannual trips to your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings.
About Our Practice
At Artistry Smile Center, we believe that just delivering dental care isn’t enough—we endeavor to make the care that you get from us as easy, efficient, and comfortable as it can possibly be. To that end we not only offer our patients plenty of care and compassion, but access to the latest technologies in oral medicine. From our cutting-edge digital radiography and sterilization center to the TVs and foot warmers in our patients’ rooms, every part of our practice is designed to make your experience as good as possible.
If you have any questions about the complexities of dental hygiene, we can be reached at our website or by phone at (614) 451-7393.