Oral Plaque: Primary Causes, Removal And Prevention

Maintaining good oral hygiene habits is not just important for freshening your breath after meals. It is very common to hear about dental plaque removal products available in the market or about the importance of everyday brushing and flossing, but what exactly is dental plaque? Continue reading this blog post to understand what oral plaque is, what are its main causes, and how to remove and prevent tooth or dental plaque from affecting your dental health.

What Exactly is Oral Plaque?

Oral plaque is extremely sticky, soft, and colourless to a pale-yellow coating of harmful bacteria that forms on the surface of teeth. Whenever you drink or eat something sugary and starchy, there it is! While dental plaque is extremely common, it needs to be removed and cleaned on a regular basis. When plaque accumulates on your teeth for too long and is not removed or clean, it can get hardened and turn into tartar, which leads to something much more serious and damages the teeth. Dental plaque formation is one of the root causes of many serious dental health problems. But the good news is dental removal is pretty simple with proper oral hygiene and your dental professional’s help! Dental plaque is extremely sticky, soft, and colourless to a pale-yellow coating of harmful bacteria that forms on the surface of teeth. Whenever you drink or eat something sugary and starchy, there it is! While dental plaque is extremely common, it needs to be removed and cleaned on a regular basis. When dental plaque accumulates on your teeth for too long and is not removed or clean, it can get hardened and turn into tartar, which leads to something much more serious and damages the teeth. Dental plaque formation is one of the root causes of many serious dental health problems. But the good news is dental removal is pretty simple with proper oral hygiene and your dental professional’s help!

What are the Primary Causes of Dental Plaque?

Hopefully we all are aware of the fact that plaque is inevitable. This is because the bacteria present inside of your mouth uses all types of foods you eat to develop. However, one of the biggest reasons for plaque formation is poor oral hygiene. In addition, consumption of certain sugary and starchy foods feed the bacteria in the mouth, and accelerate the formation of plaque, particularly if you don’t brush your teeth well after. Some of the common foods that can cause dental plaque on the teeth include acidic vegetables and fruits, milk, and processed food items such as cakes, candies, breakfast cereals, soft drinks and other sugary and starchy foods. Listed below are some of the other lesser-known causes of dental plaque build-up: 

  1. Weakened immunity may cause harmful bacteria present in the mouth to increase by ten times. 
  2. Smoking cigarettes tend to weaken an individual’s immune system, helping the bacteria to grow in the mouth. 
  3. Dry mouth due to excessive dehydration allows more plaque accumulation due to the absence of helpful anti dental plaque effects of saliva. 
  4. Poor daily oral hygiene habits allow tartar to develop, making it difficult to clean teeth at home. 
  5. Diabetes also causes an increase in the glucose level in the saliva, enhancing the growth of bacteria in the mouth. 

How To Get Rid of Stubborn Dental Plaque at Home? 

As noted above, removal of that sticky, pale or yellow coloured film on the surface of the teeth is simple with proper at-home dental hygiene practices.  Cleaning every surface of your teeth, under the gumline and between your teeth thoroughly, can help eliminate most plaque build-up that feeds harmful bacteria present in the mouth. Motivate yourself and everyone in your family to brush all the surfaces of the teeth after every meal as it helps to eliminate that sticky biofilm There’s no need of brushing your teeth vigorously for the elimination of dental plaque. Using an extra soft brush and fluoride toothpaste can greatly help!  One of the most effective ways to remove bacteria build-up is using an electric toothbrush. When excessive dental plaque has hardened into tartar, you must arrange a dental professional visit to get rid of it, as normal brushing and flossing at home will not help.

How can you Prevent Dental Plaque?

As per dental professionals, prevention of stubborn plaque is easy. Now that you have learned about how plaque accumulates on the surface of the teeth, keep in mind to do the following: 

  1. Limit processed foods and beverages, especially snacks. 
  2. Make sure to brush all inside and outside surfaces of the teeth. 
  3. Pay special attention and clean the spaces thoroughly where teeth and gums meet. 
  4. Use right oral hygiene products to brush your teeth. 
  5. Schedule frequent professional teeth cleanings and dental check-ups. 
  6. Chewing sugar-free gums for five minutes and rinsing your mouth with an antiseptic mouthwash after every meal can also help.

Last Few Words

When it comes to plaque, excellent dental health care starts with proper brushing and flossing habits. All in all, while it is very important to schedule dental check-ups regularly, a healthier mouth and dental plaque prevention first start at home. Happy brushing and flossing. You have got this!