What Exactly Is Plaque?

Plaque—the archnemesis of the teeth and gums. The antagonist to your oral health. The villain to your brushing and flossing. Dental plaque is the enemy of oral care professionals all over the world. Dentists see even the best patients with a little plaque buildup. That’s why we want to help ramp up everyone’s fight against plaque.

But before we plan the attack, we must first know the enemy. What is plaque, exactly?

Dental Plaque: Scourge of the Tooth

Plaque is a sticky, clear film on microorganisms, most of which are bacerai. Dental plaque is a mixture of elements, which include saliva, food particles, and bacterias. All the elements play a role, but the catalyst of plaque creation is food and drink consumption.

While plaue gradually develops on the tooth surface, bacteria embedded in the film begins to deteriorate the surface of the tooth enamel. Dental plaque can also recede below the gum line and attack the sensitive root system of the tooth and gum tissue.

Many people seek to remove dental plaque, as it’s rather unsightly. While it begins as a clear film, it will eventually turn yellow if you don’t seek proper treatment. If left alone, it will eventually harden and become tartar. If you don’t seek assistance from a dental professional for a cleaning, you could experience issues with tartar buildup, including tooth decay and gum disease.

Fighting plaque What Exactly Is Plaque?

The bacteria buildup can lead to a lot of health issues, but dental plaque shouldn’t stop you from living your life. There are ways to combat plaque and its negative oral health effects.

Here are the best ways to fight plaque:

  • Brushing your teeth twice a day
  • Using fluoride toothpaste
  • Flossing properly once a day
  • Using mouthwash regularly
  • Regular dental exams by dental professionals

If you have tartar buildup, only a dental professional can safely remove the buildup through scaling and root planning, or a deep cleaning.

Steps for dental plaque removal

To get rid of plaque, you must start at the beginning, during your regular at-home preventive dentistry tactics. That means brushing and flossing. When you eat, the film left behind from the food can be hard to see, so it’s important to take care of it that day.

Be careful not to brush or floss immediately after eating, though—right after eating, your tooth enamel becomes a bit softer during the process of chewing and breaking down food. So, wait until your regularly scheduled nightly teeth-cleaning routine.

First, you want to floss.  Pull out at least a foot length of floss, then wrap it around your two index fingers enough to where you have a good grip on it. Next, take the floss and gently scrub back and forth, up and down and all throughout your mouth.

Second, brush your teeth. Do it exactly in a way that is most comfortable, but make sure it is thorough. Don’t scrub too hard on your teeth—do it gently and thoroughly. Scrub in circular motions and switch to every surface of the tooth throughout your mouth. Make sure you’re using fluoride toothpaste.

Lastly, rinse your mouth out with a fluoride mouthwash.

Take Care of Dental Plaque at Balle & Associates

Our Las Vegas dental office, Balle & Associates, will be your greatest ally in the fight against dental plaque. Check out the variety of oral care services and techniques to keep your teeth healthy and beautiful.

What Exactly Is Plaque?

Balle & Associates is staffed by the most skilled and experienced general dentists in Las Vegas, Nevada. Dr. Peter Balle and Dr. Tate Guild use a personalized approach to get to know patients and offer them services specific to their needs.