Oct 16, 2017

It’s been almost two years since you’ve visited your dentist in Sarasota. You wake up one morning to brush only to find brown stains on the inside of your bottom row of teeth. You didn’t mind going to bed without brushing beforehand, but now it’s made your teeth an unsightly yellow and brown as a result.

Luckily, your dentist is trained to remove this exact buildup from your mouth. To learn what this is and more, keep reading to find out the best preventive tips.

What is Dental Plaque?

Dental plaque is a sticky, colorless film that forms in between and on the surface of your teeth. This biofilm is made up of microorganisms that can develop on, below, and along the gum line. As you fail to brush and floss regularly, this plaque will only continue to grow and release more acids as you consume food.

For example, when you consume a sugary or starchy snack, the plaque feeds off these compounds and releases acid. This acid then wears down your enamels causing cavities and tartar to accumulate.

What Happens if I Don’t Remove Built-up Plaque?

Without regular brushing, plaque will eventually turn into a substance known as tartar, which is much more difficult to remove. Tartar, also known as calculus, is a hardened form of dental plaque that can usually only be removed by a dentist.

If this tartar isn’t removed, it can cause irritation and inflammation of the gum tissue and lead to gum disease. The gums will appear red in color and may even bleed when you try to brush them. Plaque buildup can also cause structural damage to your teeth and bone supporting the teeth and gums, so regular at-home care as well as regular dental checkups with your Sarasota dentist are essential to getting your teeth back to their healthy state.

What’s the Best Solution to Removing Plaque?

The best way to fight plaque buildup is through regular prevention. This includes brushing with a fluoride-based toothpaste, flossing at least twice a day, and regular checkups with your dentist at least twice a year as recommend by the American Dental Association. In addition, patients are asked to avoid sugary/starchy snacks and tobacco products as these will only accelerate plaque buildup.

During your cleaning, the dentist will perform treatments known as scaling and root planning. With scaling, the dentist will use specialized instruments to scrape plaque and tartar buildup from your teeth as well as above and below the gum line. Root planning targets the roots of your teeth as well as hard-to-reach gum pockets.

If you notice your gums are inflamed or bleed while brushing, contact your dentist in Sarasota today to end stubborn plaque once and for all!

About the Author

Dr. C. Romesh Weerasooriya earned his Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from the University of Florida, College of Dentistry in 1994. With over 1,000 hours of continued education and a strong belief in developing long-term relationships with patients, his personalized care only raises the bar for dental care in the community. To learn more about him and his practice, you can contact him at any of the following locations on his website.