How to Prevent Dental Plaque

Posted on: October 5, 2018

Dental plaque is quite a widespread phenomenon, so you probably already have some idea about it. However, it is helpful to know some vital information about it so that you can take the necessary precautions to prevent the issue. Plaque is a sticky sheet of bacteria accumulation on the teeth or gums.

After consuming a meal or snack, you should observe the necessary dental care of brushing and flossing to remove food particles. The bacteria in plaque produce acids that dissolve or weaken the tooth enamel. If the plaque is not removed, it could build up and harden into tartar and may eventually cause tooth decay.

Plaque also releases substances that cause gum inflammation, causing the area to turn red and swollen or even bleed. One way to prevent tooth decay and gum disease is to make the consumption of a balanced diet a priority and avoid eating snacks excessively between meals. If you crave snacks, you can consider meals such as raw vegetables, plain yogurt, cheese or healthy fruits.

In fact, consuming the proper nutrients contributes immensely to the development of healthy teeth and gums. If your diet does not contain some nutrients, the tissues in your mouth will find it challenging to combat infections, and that may lead to gum disease. While poor nutrition is not a direct culprit of gum disease, the condition may worsen quickly and could be more severe in people suffering from certain nutrient deficiencies.

That is not all

To prevent your meal options from causing any significant harm to your teeth, take steps like drinking enough water, reducing the consumption of snacks between meals and maintaining a healthy diet. If you must consume snacks, opt for nutritious foods with low sugar content, making sure to note the type and rate of food consumption per week.

Plaque presence and poor gum health could also be a result of poor cleaning routines or lack of adequate cleaning. Many people have issues with maintaining proper oral health because they cannot handle a toothbrush properly. This could be a result of severe physical disability or simple dexterity issues.

Specific steps are available to make the cleaning process easier for people who have a hard time holding a toothbrush or dental floss. Getting an electric toothbrush or commercial floss holder can help. Other basic home remedies include:

  • Putting an elastic bandage or adhesive tape around the handle
  • Using a full elastic band to fix the brush to the hand
  • Tying floss into a loop for better handling
  • Enlarging the toothbrush handle with a sponge or rubber ball
  • Elongating the handle with wood or plastic such as a ruler, popsicle stick or tongue depressor

Final note

If you notice dental plaque or bleeding gums, you should book an appointment with the dentist for immediate evaluation and dental cleaning. If the plaque is not cleaned out in time, it could worsen into serious dental issues. Your dentist can also recommend an oral hygiene routine that will help keep your teeth free of plaque.

Request an appointment here: or call Des Moines Dental Center at (206) 408-8541 for an appointment in our Des Moines office.

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