Tartar; What It Is And How You Can Prevent It

Tartar; What It Is And How You Can Prevent It

Have you ever heard of the word tartar?

No, not in relation to the sauce that goes on fish, but linked to dental health? If you have, you may think it is just another name for plaque. After all, it is mentioned in many dental commercials, so that’s got to be what it is right? Nope!

In this article, you will be introduced to tartar, what it is and some other nifty little facts that you need to know about this common issue to prevent it from impacting your oral health.

Tartar is calcified plaque

So, starting at the beginning- what is tartar?

Everyone has plaque in their mouth; a sticky, usually clear dental residue that plays host to an entire family of bacteria.

If plaque is allowed to sit on your teeth for too long, it will eventually harden. Not only that, but it may change shade and become slightly darker, leaving a rather unusual mark on your teeth. And while you may think that tartar is easy to remove, it isn’t and it can become more than an aesthetic issue with your teeth.

You will need help to remove it

So, you now have tartar on your teeth and no amount of brushing, flossing or mouthwash is removing it.

This is when you contact your dentist St Johns Wood! Well, to be more specific, you will need the help of a dental hygienist, who will be able to remove it from your teeth with a scale and polish. This will not only remove the tartar and plaque that is above the gum line, but it will also help to remove it from those difficult to reach places, such as in between teeth or below the gum line.

dentist removing tartar

It can cause problems

So you may be wondering if tartar can cause issues with your oral health.

The short answer is that yes, it can.

When it has hardened, all the bacteria that were reducing inside the original plaque do not die; they become trapped. And once fused to your teeth, these bacteria will irritate the surrounding gum and can cause gingivitis and other periodontal issues to form.

And as you may know, if you have excessive amounts of plaque in your mouth, (and tartar), this can contribute to a whole host of secondary issues such as cardiovascular disease, cancers and even heart attacks.

So, play it safe and have it removed as soon as you can!

Your diet contributes to it

Be honest with yourself; do you eat a lot of sugar? Do you regularly eat starchy foods?

If you do, then the chances are that you have a higher level of plaque in your mouth which, in turn, can lead to a higher level of tartar.

So, to keep your teeth plaque-free and thus tartar free, you may want to seriously consider eliminating sugar and starchy foods from your diet if possible. Alternatively, you can talk to your dental team about the best preventive methods.

It’s preventable!

Following on from the last point, plaque and tartar can be prevented.

Eliminate as much sugar and starch from your diet as possible, brush your teeth regularly and of course, see your dental team as often as you can.