Dental hygiene – All about tartar

Tartar - Oral Hygiene - Scaling

Nowadays, we hear a lot about disease prevention and conscious health care. How about our teeth? There is a lot we can do to keep our teeth healthy if we know the hazards. From the article you can find out all about tartar, what it is, how it comes to existence and what problems it can cause is untreated. And of course, we will reveal the best solutions for prevention and treatment.

So, what is tartar?

Tartar is a layer of mineralized and hardened plaque. It builds up on the surface of the teeth, even under the gum – out of reach of the toothbrush. It is full of harmful bacteria, and so, is a health risk to both the gum and teeth.

How does tartar build up?

Lets start with plaque. Plaque is a thin layer of scrapings that stays behind in the mouth after eating and drinking. In this layer, bacteria start to grow and multiply. We can eliminate plaque for 1-2 days after it forms, with proper brushing. Later on, the minerals in the salvia cause the plaque to harden. We call this hardened plaque tartar. From this point, it can not be removed with a toothbrush.

What problems can tartar cause?

The bacteria colonizing tartar produce acid during their metabolism. This means, that it is in constant acidic reaction with the surface of the tooth. The enamel is sensitive to acid. Because of this, the enamel slowly starts to break down and allows dental caries and other diseases to evolve. Furthermore, constantly exposing the gum to this bacteria-filled build-up leads to inflammation, which is one of the main causes of tooth loss in the long run.

Periodontitis and periimplantitis

We call the permanent inflammation of the gum periodontitis. If it occurs around dental implants, it is periimplantitis, but it is mostly caused by the same problem: the lack of oral hygiene. The permanent inflammation has various symptoms at the beginning. The gum turning red from pink, and frequent bleeding can be warning signals. If untreated, the gum and jaw bone start breaking down, because of which the teeth will loosen and fall out.

Prevention: Daily care and regular check-up

So what can we do to prevent this?

Daily care: The most important thing is to pay attention to your daily teeth cleaning routine. Choose a soft toothbrush, and clean not only your teeth, but your gum as well. Turn to your dentist for help if you are insecure about your technique!

Regular check-up: Every specialist suggests seeing your dentist regularly. Having a check-up done every six months means the small problems are noticed in time. If so, they are treated in time, before they cause bigger trouble, needing a more invasive intervention.

Scaling twice a year: There are areas in the mouth, which are out of reach of the toothbrush, for example the intertooth space and under the gum. Therefore, tartar is going to build up in time. Removing tartar is possible with a special dental treatment called scaling. During the treatment, the specialist removes tartar from the hardly reachable spaces and polishes the surface of the teeth. It is recommended to do scaling every six months to prevent the inflammation of the gum.

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