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The Difference Between Plaque And Tartar

The Difference Between Plaque And Tartar
by Dr. Stephen J. Parr D.D.S.

Read The Difference Between Plaque And Tartar by Dr. Stephen J. Parr D.D.S. to learn more about Grove Smiles® Dentistry and our Dentistry office in Coconut Grove, FL.

We look forward to serving you! Call - 305-858-0505.

A question we often hear is, “What is the difference between the plaque on my teeth and tartar?” Many people think they are the same thing, but the truth is there is a significant difference between dental plaque and tartar.

That is why we feel that it is essential to have you understand the difference between the two. Knowing the difference between plaque and tartar may help to explain why a daily oral hygiene routine is so crucial, as well as not missing the twice-yearly planned checkups with your dentist.

What is Plaque?

Have you ever wondered what that soft, sticky film that builds up on your teeth is? That is what we refer to as dental plaque. Not only does it build up on your teeth but under your gums.

Guess what’s worse? It contains millions of bacteria that thrive on the food you eat, especially sugar and carbohydrate-laden meals. Then, disgustingly after the bacteria “eat their meal,” they produce acids that erode your tooth enamel and cause cavities.

How is Tartar Different?

So if the bacteria and acid-eating sticky film on my teeth is the plaque, what is dental tartar?

Tartar is the hardening of plaque accumulation on your teeth when it is not removed correctly and regularly. Scarily, dental tartar can cause cavities and tooth discoloration, sensitivity, gum recession, and periodontal disease.

In fact, tartar buildup can only be removed by dental professionals. Unfortunately, once the tartar is there, you cannot get rid of it with regular brushing and flossing.

The Plaque Attack

The best way to avoid plaque, tartar, and tooth decay damage is to start with an attack plan of good daily oral hygiene. This includes brushing your teeth at least twice a day and flossing once a day. Drinking water and chewing sugar-free gum after meals and snacks can also help!

Mark It In Your Calendar

No matter how thorough your oral hygiene routine is, plaque and tartar formation are inevitable. So come in to see us at Grove Smiles Dentistry in Coconut Grove, FL, every six months! Our job is to help you and your family maintain a beautiful, healthy smile that’s plaque- and tartar-free!

For Your Health,

Dr. Stephen J. Parr D.D.S.

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Grove Smiles® Dentistry

Dr. Rita Dargham, D.M.D.
2685 Bird Avenue
Coconut Grove, FL 33133
Phone: 305-858-0505
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