Before you start reading this, do us a favor. Go to the bathroom and look at the inner surface of your lower teeth in the mirror. Do you see a pale-yellow layer on the teeth? Are you struggling to brush it off? Have you tried scraping it off with your nail to no avail? That, in a nutshell, my friend, is tartar, which has led many to ask the question, “How to remove tartar from teeth?”
In this article, we will show you how tartar and plaque build-up can lead to many oral health problems and discuss how to remove tartar from teeth.
What is Tartar?
Despite regular brushing and flossing, you still have bacteria in your mouth. They mesh with the by-products of food and form a sticky film called dental plaque.
Plaque coats your teeth, settling under the gum line, sticks to fillings, etc. The bacteria in plaque damage tooth enamel, causing cavities. However, regular removal of plaque prevents gum disease and permanent tooth decay.
However, you can run into bigger problems if you fail to remove plaque.
Tartar – also known as calculus – forms when the plaque hardens on accumulation. Tartar coats the tooth surface and invades below the gum line. It feels like a crusty blanket on teeth, and because of its porous nature, food and drinks stain it.
Let us now show you how tartar and plaque build-up can adversely affect your oral health, after which we will discuss how to remove tartar from teeth.
Plaque and tartar can –
- Destroy enamel, leading to teeth sensitivity, cavities, and even tooth loss.
- Cause bad breath due to the build-up of bacteria.
- Lead to gum disease.
How Does Tartar Affect Gums and Teeth?
Tartar and plaque irritate the gums, causing inflammation and gum disease. The early stages of gum disease are reversible and are known as gingivitis. The common symptoms of the oral condition are –
- Swollen, red gums
- Gums that bleed when your brush or floss
- Tender (painful) gums
If you fail to get professional help, gingivitis progresses to periodontitis, which isn’t reversible. In addition to the inflamed, tender, and bleeding gums, you will notice the following –
- Pain on chewing
- Gums pulling away from teeth
- Loose teeth
- Pus collecting between the teeth
And that’s not all – the bacteria that cause periodontitis can leach into the bloodstream, increasing your risk of heart and lung disease. This is why it is very important to get in touch with a professional if you notice any of these signs or symptoms.
How Do I Remove Tartar From My Teeth?
Unfortunately, tartar isn’t something you can remove at home on your own. To get rid of the hardened plaque, one requires professional intervention.
When you visit the dental clinic, the dental professional will assess the health of your teeth, gums, and mouth. If they notice tartar on your teeth, they will recommend professional cleaning.
How to Remove Tartar from Teeth: Go for Professional Teeth Cleaning
Professional teeth cleaning is cleaning done at a dental office. A dentist or a dental hygienist carries out the treatment – which plays a huge role in preventing oral diseases from occurring.
In the procedure, a dental professional cleans your teeth using various dental instruments, mainly ultrasonic scalers.
The cleaning removes any plaque, tartar, and surface stains from your teeth. The removal aids in the healing of the gums, preventing any infection, inflammation, or bleeding.
The dental professional cleans not just the tooth surface but also clears out any buildup underneath the gum line to remove any trapped debris or tartar.
After cleaning your teeth, they provide instructions on how to care for your teeth and gums at home to prevent tartar from re-forming. They also prescribe medication to relieve any pain or discomfort you may feel.
Your teeth may feel sensitive for a few days following the teeth cleaning. Use a sensitivity-friendly toothpaste to help.
How To Prevent Tartar From Forming?
Instead of wondering about how to remove tartar from teeth, it’s better to practice good oral health and hygiene than trying to figure out how to remove tartar from teeth.
Brushing regularly, twice a day, for 2 minutes, prevents plaque from settling on the tooth surface. Use a brush with soft bristles and pay attention to the hard-to-reach areas – the back teeth and the inner surfaces of teeth.
Use An Electric Toothbrush
Research shows that electronic toothbrushes get rid of plaque better than manual ones. You can use any electric toothbrush, just ensure it has the ADA seal of approval since these undergo rigorous safety tests and quality control.
Use Fluoridated Toothpaste
Toothpaste containing fluoride is great for controlling tartar. The fluoride helps repair enamel damage. Some toothpaste has triclosan that fights the bacteria in plaque.
Don’t Forget To Floss
You could be Houdini with a toothbrush. But if you fail to floss, you’re giving plaque and tartar the perfect way in. Flossing removes plaque from between your teeth and keeps it away from these hard-to-reach areas.
Use A Mouthwash
Rinsing daily with an antiseptic mouthwash helps kill plaque-causing bacteria.
Watch Your Diet
The bacteria in your mouth proliferate on starchy and sugary foods. On exposure to them, the bacteria release harmful acids.
Limit the number of sugary foods you consume and try to eat a healthy diet. You don’t have to give sugar up entirely, simply be mindful of your indulgence.
Drink plenty of water and brush after meals.
Studies show that smokers or people using other tobacco products are more likely to have tartar.
Visit Your Dentist Regularly
Routine visits to your dental clinic allow professionals to offer preventive therapies, ensuring that your mouth is healthy.
How Often Do I Need To Remove Tartar?
The American Dental Association states that dental visits depend on the state of your oral health and the dentist’s recommendation.
However, most dentists advise getting a check-up and teeth cleaning every 6 months and more frequently if you have or are at risk of gum disease.
People who require teeth cleanings more often are –
- People with dry mouth.
- People who are unable to brush their teeth due to health reasons.
- People who have difficulty understanding or completing a dental hygiene routine.
Wondering How to Remove Tartar from Teeth?
Dr. Katie Daniels is the dental expert at the Valley Ridge Dental Clinic. An alumnus of the University of Minnesota, she provides a personal approach to addressing each of her patient’s dental needs, including how to remove tartar from teeth.
At Valley Ridge Dental, our team’s goal is to provide our patients with top-notch care, friendly service, and gentle treatment. We try our best to ensure that you and your family have a pleasant experience and are more than happy to return next time!
To know more about how Valley Ridge Dental removes tartar, feel free to call us at (651) 439-0322. You can also fill out this form, and we’ll reach out to you.