Plaque is a slippery, sticky, and colorless film of bacteria that appears on the teeth. They are sometimes referred to as bacteria film. It is a group of living microbes surrounded by a sticky surface. The role of the sticky coating is to aid the microbes in attaching to the surface of your mouth so they can multiply into a growing community. Plaques are most noticeable when the teeth are not brushed. Everyone has them to some extent but brushing, flossing, and regular visits to the dentist reduces the likelihood of plaques developing into tartar.
Plaque is almost unavoidable as you cannot completely remove bacteria from the human mouth. However, it worsens with a lack of proper oral hygiene, like not brushing or flossing regularly. Another cause of plaques is the consumption of sugary foods, drinks, milk, cakes, candy, carbohydrates, starch, etc. These foods, when left on the teeth, can be fed on by bacteria which yields acids in the process. When good oral hygiene is not properly taken into place, these acids can lead to gingivitis, cavities, and tooth decay which can eat off the support for your teeth. Plaques can further harden into tartar. Tartar can build up in the inside and roots of the teeth, which can be removed by only a professional. The most apparent way to identify a plaque is by the fuzzy feeling you get when you run your tongue over your teeth.
Asides from the formation of tartar, there are other effects of plaque, especially when it hasn’t been properly taken care of. They include:
It is important to see your oral hygienist when any of these symptoms are noticed. Lack of treatment or prevention of plaque can have a serious toll on your oral health, which is both painful and expensive. To prevent the buildup of plaque in the teeth, it is advised to:
Plaques can be treated personally, but when it builds up in the teeth, only a professional can treat it, only if it hasn’t done much damage to the teeth and gums.