Tartar, also called calculus, is a buildup of plaque and minerals on your teeth. If plaque is not cleaned off the teeth regularly, it combines with minerals in the saliva and hardens into crystals. Tartar is difficult to remove and can be made worse by poor oral hygiene habits and excessive sugar intake. Our Wicker Park dental specialist explains more about tartar below.
Tartar can have devastating effects on your dental health. It harbors bacteria and increases the amount of staining on your teeth, turning them yellow or brown. Over time, the buildup can even lead to gum disease, as the gum pulls away from the bacteria in the tartar. It also causes bad breath and increases your risk of cavities, as the bacteria trapped in the tartar can begin to cause decay. It is critical to practice good dental hygiene, so your teeth don’t form tartar in the first place.
Once plaque has hardened into tartar, you must have it removed by our dentist. It’s simply too hard to brush or floss away. Our dentist or hygienist will use sharp tools to scrape the tartar off, clean under the gum line, and make your teeth smooth again to prevent further plaque buildup.
The best way to prevent tartar is to practice great dental hygiene. This means brushing and flossing twice a day and after eating sugar or drinking sugary beverages. Good dental hygiene will keep plaque away and make it impossible for tartar to build up on your teeth, keeping your smile bright and clean! You should also get your scheduled dental cleanings to ensure your teeth and gums are in great health.
The information provided in this article is not meant to be medical advice and is for educational purposes only. If you would like to learn more about this and other topics related to dentistry, feel free to contact Dente Complete Dentistry, with a convenient dental office in Wicker Park by calling 773.295.0562 or by clicking here.