Plaque may seem insignificant, but if not treated it can turn into tooth decay or gum disease. It is very important to fight plaque before it’s effects are permanent.
Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that forms on your teeth and gums every day. The bacteria in plaque releases acids that attack tooth enamel after every meal or snack. Recurring attacks can cause the enamel to weaken, leading to tooth decay.
Many of the foods we eat are causing the plaque bacteria to produce acids. If you are snacking often, you could be having acid attacks all day long. Choosing nutritious foods such as raw vegetables, plain yogurt, cheese or a piece of fruit can prevent these acid attacks. If the plaque is not removed on a daily basis by brushing, it can eventually harden into tartar.
Plaque also produces substances that irritate gums, resulting in gingivitis. The first stage of gum disease, gingivitis causes your gums to swell, turn red and even bleed. Eventually, the gums may pull away from your teeth, pockets will form and fill with more bacteria and pus. Unless treated, the bone around the teeth can be destroyed and your teeth may become loose and have to be removed. Periodontal disease is the main cause of tooth loss in adults.
Developing healthy habits are the best way to fight plaque. Thoroughly brushing and flossing is the first step to attacking plaque. Visiting your dentist is the next step. It’s best to schedule appointments for your family every 6 months to check for the warning signs of tooth decay and gum disease. Bolivar Family Dental would love provide your family with excellent oral health care.