Dental plaque is inevitable. Everyone develops the sticky, clear film on their teeth known as plaque. Plaque develops as a result of bacteria consuming the sugars on your teeth and in your mouth.
Over time, if you let plaque build up, you greatly increase your risk of developing diseases such as gingivitis along with tooth loss. It is important to prevent plaque build-up or to get the plaque removed before it hardens and becomes tartar, which is considerably harder to remove than plaque.
The good news is your Mcallen pediatric dentists have gathered helpful methods on how to prevent plaque build-up.
How to Prevent Plaque Build-Up
1. Practice Good Oral Hygiene
There is more to good oral hygiene than just brushing your teeth first thing in the morning. Besides good brushing techniques, there are other habits we need to incorporate into our routines to prevent plaque build-up, including:
- There is a correct brushing pattern we should follow to optimize teeth cleaning and prevent plaque. While brushing your teeth, make sure you are brushing every surface, which are: the outside surface, the inside surface, and the chewing surface. If you miss spots, you’re giving plaque room to grow. Not brushing the right places might give room for plaque to build up.
- As previously mentioned, only brushing your teeth when you wake up in the morning won’t cut it. It is important to brush your teeth at least twice a day (ideally after eating) for two minutes each time. It is recommended to use a soft-bristle toothbrush, fluoride toothpaste, and brush with gentle, circular motions at a 45-degree angle.
- Another way to prevent plaque build-up is to floss daily, ideally before brushing to get any food or plaque that may be lodged in between your teeth.
2. Sugar-Free Gum
The American Dental Association has studies that show how chewing sugar-free gums after meals can prevent the build up of plaque on your teeth.
- According to the ADA, chewing sugar-free gums for approximately 20 mins. after a meal can aid in preventing plaque build-up and tooth decay.
- Sugar-free gums invigorate the production of saliva. This neutralizes the acidity in your mouth, and like floss, can help to remove any particles of food or bacteria stuck in between your teeth.
- When choosing a gum, pick one that has the American Dental Association (ADA) seal for those times you can’t brush after eating.
3. Use Mouthwash Regularly
Using antiseptic mouthwash after brushing or flossing your teeth prevents plaque.
- Antiseptic mouthwashes reach areas a toothbrush can not.
- Mouthwash assists in flushing out food particles which contribute to plaque build-up.
4. Choose the Right Foods
The food we eat is the biggest contributor to plaque, diseases, and tooth decay. We should be more conscious of the foods we put in our mouths and bodies.
- Bread, chips, and sugary sweets allow the growth of bacteria in the mouth.
- Vegetables and fruits are amazing at controlling plaque build-up. These nutritious foods are high in fiber and water content, which improves oral health by stimulating the production of saliva.
5. Visit Your Dentist
It is recommended you visit your McAllen dentist at least twice a year. Remember, it is better to catch plaque build-up early on to prevent diseases such as gingivitis or to prevent tooth decay or loss.
McAllen Pediatrics Dentist Have You Covered
The McAllen pediatrics dentists at Heroes Dental care about you and your family’s oral health. Our team at Heroes Dental is here to ensure your smile stays beautiful and healthy by informing you on how to prevent plaque build-up.