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What is Tartar & How to Remove Tartar on Teeth

Many are failed understand what is Tartar and how it forms, what are the reasons behind tartar formation. Below we will be understanding about Tartar Symptoms, identification, Prevention techniques and how to remove tartar from teeth.

What is Tartar?

Tartar is a form of hardened dental plaque. When plaque accumulates and it is not removed from teeth, it can harden and turn into tartar. Tartar can be formed above the gingiva (supragingivally) or below the gingiva (subgingivally). Supragingival calculus formation is most abundant on the buccal (cheek) surfaces of maxillary (upper) molars and on the lingual surfaces of lower incisors.

These areas experience high salivary flow because of their proximity to the parotid and sublingual glands. Sub gingival calculus forms below the gum line and is typically darkened in color by the presence of black pigmented bacteria. Once it formed, it is too hard and firmly attached to be removed with a toothbrush.

Every time you eat, the bacteria create acids that can damage tooth enamel and lead to cavities. If you remove plaque regularly, you can prevent tooth decay and so many dental problems. If you don’t remove it regularly, it can harden and turn into tartar.

When the tartar buildup is ignored for a long time, it causes bad breath, yellowing and browning of the teeth, gum diseases and periodontal diseases. Once tartar has formed, only a dentist or hygienist can remove it.

What is Plaque? And How Tartar forms?

Tartar is a form of hardened dental plaque. Plaque is a sticky, colorless deposit of bacteria that is constantly forming on the tooth surface. Plaque begins forming on the teeth 4 to 12 hrs. after brushing. Dental plaque is hardened by the precipitation of minerals from saliva and gingival crevicular fluid. This process of precipitation kills the bacterial cells within dental plaque, but the rough and hardened surface that is formed provides an ideal surface for further plaque formation. Calculus is composed of both inorganic (minerals) and organic (cellular and extracellular matrix) components.

What is the Effect of Tartar on Teeth and Gums?

  • Tartar can lead to cavities
  • It can lead to progressive gum diseases
  • The mildest form of gum disease is called gingivitis. It can usually be stopped or reversed if you brush, floss and get regular cleanings from your dentist
  • If gingivitis is not treated earlier, it can get worse and leads to periodontal disease
  • Tartar is more porous, it absorbs stains easily. So if you are a coffee or tea drinker, or if you smoke, it is especially important to prevent tartar buildup
  • Tartar threatens good oral health and makes your smile less attractive
  • It can lead to bad breath

How to Find Tartar on Teeth? Symptoms

The most common sign of tartar is a yellow or brown color on the teeth or gums. Unlike plaque, which is a colorless form of bacteria, tartar is a mineral buildup that’s fairly easy to see if above the gum line. Bad breath and bleeding gums are also seen. So visit your dentist as soon as you notice tartar on the teeth

What are the Factors that Promote the Tartar Buildup?

  • Individuals vary greatly in their susceptibility to tartar buildup. For many, these deposits build up faster with age.
  • Studies show that people who smoke or use other tobacco products are more likely to have tartar
  • Improper brushing and flossing
  • Frequent consumption of more sugary foods
  • Decreased saliva production
  • Individuals who have limited manual dexterity
  • Psychological patients

How to Prevent Tartar Buildup?

  • Brush regularly twice a day for 2 minutes
  • Use soft bristled toothbrush
  • Select a tooth brush that can reach hard to clean areas
  • Proper brushing with tartar control toothpaste
  • Regular flossing
  • Watch your diet, try to eat a healthy diet and limit the amount of sugary foods you eat
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Brush or rinse thoroughly after meals or snacks
  • Avoid smoking because tobacco products are more likely to have tartar
  • Add apples and carrots to your diet because these foods can naturally clean your teeth
  • Powered tooth brushes are useful for patients with limited manual dexterity and psychological patients

How to Remove Tartar from Teeth?

Once tartar has formed, only a dentist or hygienist can remove it. Visit your dentist for every 6 months to remove any plaque and tartar that might have formed and to prevent further problems. The process of removing tartar is called scaling. During scaling, the dentist or hygienist uses special instruments to remove tartar from your teeth above and below the gumline.

Dental Health Guide, Providing information on dental care and dental hygiene along with detailing the most common dental diseases with symptoms and treatment methods. Readers should use the dental articles as reference only and consult a dentist and visit a dental clinic for dental health problems.

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