What is dental plaque?
Dental plaque is a thin, sticky film made up of bacteria and food particles. These bacteria feed off of sugar and, as a result, produce an acid that attacks the teeth. Continuous acid attacks on the teeth will eventually cause dental decay and other oral health issues.
If you wish to avoid cavities and other dental problems, it is important to do what you can to decrease the amount of plaque on your teeth. Your Portsmouth NH Dentist has a few tips to help you get rid of and avoid dental plaque.
- Brushing Regularly.
It is recommended by the ADA that you brush your teeth twice daily, for two minutes each time. Failure to do so can result in a buildup of plaque and tartar.
Tartar is a hardened form of plaque that forms if plaque is left unremoved. Tartar is more a more difficult substance to remove and often patients require a dental cleaning.
- Floss Daily.
Your Portsmouth NH Dentist reminds you that it is important to floss daily as well to brush. Unfortunately brushing only removes 65% of the bacteria and plaque/ Flossing will remove the remaining 35%.
Flossing is extremely vital to the health of your teeth and gums. It helps to clean the spaces between your teeth and along the gum lines. Dental floss can reach the places in your mouth that a toothbrush cannot.
- Keep Up with Dental Checkups.
Even with careful brushing and flossing you may miss some of the dental plaque. Overtime the plaque will buildup and eventually turn into tartar. It is important to visit your Portsmouth NH Dentist as recommended so that the tartar can be removed.
The ADA recommends visiting your dentist once every 6 months, but some patients may need to go more often than that.
Be sure to keep up with your dental visits. Those who avoid the dentist and neglect the health of their teeth are at an increased risk of getting cavities and losing their teeth!
- Eat Fruits and Vegetables
A hydrated mouth is a healthy mouth. Your teeth are at higher risk of decaying if your mouth is dry. Eating fruits and vegetables helps to increase saliva flow and naturally removes some of the plaque an bacteria.
It is better to eat raw fruits and vegetables with the skin on for the best results. Before toothbrushes and toothpaste existed fruits and vegetables acted as nature’s natural toothbrush.
- Fight off your Sweet Tooth
Bacteria that make up dental plaque feed off of sugar. Eating and drinking things that are high in sugar helps the bacteria to thrive. Sugary foods and beverages that are soft and sticky are even worse for your teeth.
For more tips on how you can avoid dental plaque, or to schedule an appointment for a checkup with your Portsmouth NH Dentist call (603) 436-7787!