Tartar: How to Manage and Fight It

Dec 24, 2013

Tartar, also known as dental calculus, is the result of plaque that has been left long enough on teeth to harden into tartar. Once plaque has advanced into tartar, it can only be removed by a dental professional.

The most conventional and effective way to stop tartar build up is with preventative care. This means following the American Dental Association’s (ADA) advice and brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste while also flossing each day as well. If you want to take further steps, you can also utilize a fluoride-based, non-alcoholic mouthwash as well. If possible, brush between meals as well, since plaque itself begins to form only four hours after you’ve last brushed.

Following these steps will prevent plaque from building up over time. Otherwise, the buildup of bacterial deposits can calcify into tartar. This is a major contributing factor to periodontal disease such as gingivitis. You can find tartar where you find plaque, which is primarily on and below the gum line. It gives teeth a brown or yellow discoloration, and also stains teeth color over time.

Tartar removal requires a special process known as scaling. Your dentist or dental hygienist will use specific instruments to remove the tartar from your gum line and anywhere else it might be found.

You can also take advantage of toothpastes specifically designed to control tartar build up. Keep an eye out for toothpastes that have polyphosphate or pyrophosphate, which are tartar inhibitors.

The only way you can be sure you do not have tartar or that it is properly removed is by visiting your dentist. Contact the experienced tartar removal team at Lifetime Smiles today for a free consultation.

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