Plaque is a sticky substance that is formed when bacteria present in the mouth get deposited along with saliva, food particles and other natural substances on the surface of the teeth. Plaque can cause tooth decay and even gum disease. If gum disease is not treated, it can cause damage to the tissues holding the teeth in place and eventually teeth loss.
Brush twice a day and floss daily. If you brush and floss only once a day, do it before going to bed. Consult your dentist or dental hygienist to know if your plaque removal measures are all right.
Everyone has plaque. Plaque begins to form soon after a tooth is cleaned. It takes just about an hour for it to increase to measurable levels and if it is not removed daily it can harden into tartar. Plaque grows as the bacteria in it multiply. It is known to be the leading cause of cavities and gum disease. The bacteria in plaque break the sugar (carbohydrate) in food and lead to formation of acid in the mouth. Repeated exposure of the tooth enamel to acids can soften the enamel and a cavity may form. If plaque is not removed it irritates the gums around your teeth, and causes gingivitis (red, swollen, bleeding gums), periodontal disease and tooth loss.
Plaque buildup is very much preventable with proper care. Tips to prevent plaque buildup include
Steps to remove plaque
Floss: Floss daily. It helps to remove germs, food particles, and plaque from in between your teeth and below the gumline, where your toothbrush does not reach. Then rinse your mouth.
Brush Teeth: Brush your teeth twice daily (in the morning, and before sleeping at night). Use a toothbrush with "soft" or "extra soft" bristles as there is a risk of damage to your gums if you use hard tooth brush. Use a toothbrush that is approved by the Indian Dental Association. Rinse your mouth. Use toothpaste that contains fluoride. Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel, which ecreases the risk of decay.
Clean your tongue: Clean your tongue with brush, by moving the brush firmly but gently from back to front. This can clear even more bacteria from your mouth. Rinse again after cleaning your tongue.