What is Dental Plaque?
You hear your dentist tell you that you need to be flossing every day in order to remove plaque from your teeth. But what exactly is dental plaque, and what can you do about it?
Dental plaque is a damaging substance that forms on the teeth every single day. There are thousands of bacteria that live inside the mouth. Some of these bacteria are helpful bacteria and others are damaging. However, even the helpful bacteria can turn harmful when they are allowed to remain in the mouth for an extended period of time. Helpful bacteria have the job of breaking down food particles that are left behind in the mouth after eating. Tiny bits of food can easily become trapped between the teeth, and the helpful bacteria are there to break them down and get rid of them. However, as these helpful bacteria do their job, they are also producing damaging acids in the process.
Bacteria love the sugars that are in all foods. As they break down the other parts of foods, they cling to the sugars and begin producing acids. It is these acids that are causing the damage to the teeth. The combination of bacteria, sugars, and acids create dental plaque. Dental plaque is the sticky white substance that you can feel on your teeth if you run your tongue across the teeth. Dental plaque is extremely damaging, and it can begin causing irreversible damage in a very short amount of time.
When dental plaque is not removed from the teeth, the acids within the plaque begin eating away at the tooth enamel. At first, they cause small holes, or “cavities,” but the longer these acids have contact with the teeth the more damage they will do. They will begin to seep into the inner structure of the teeth and cause infection and decay.
Dr. Wayne Suway has been in dentistry for over 30 years, and he is unfortunately all too aware of how damaging plaque can be to the teeth. He has the experience, knowledge, and expertise to advise patients on how to prevent plaque from forming in the mouth and how to treat it when it does. Contact the dental practice of Dr. Wayne G. Suway today to schedule your dental cleaning to rid your mouth of plaque and to prevent it from coming back.
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1820 The Exchange SE, #600
Atlanta, GA 30339
Phone: (770) 953-1752
FAX: (770) 953-6470Mon - Thu: 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM
Closed for lunch: 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM