Family Dentist Grandville, MI

We understand how hard it is to stay away from sweets. However, before biting into that chocolate bar, we ask that you continue brushing and flossing daily to prevent dental plaque buildup. If you haven’t already, it’s also a good idea to make sure you schedule your routine teeth cleaning with our office.

While plaque is nearly invisible, it doesn’t stop being a threat to your teeth and gums. In this blog post, we will teach you how to prevent cavities caused by plaque so you can maintain a healthy smile for life.

Why Dental Plaque is Dangerous to Your Health

Brushing and flossing teeth daily is important because it removes plaque from your smile. Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that builds up on your teeth and gums. The bacteria in plaque use sugars from food particles to create acids that erode tooth enamel and cause cavities.

The bad news is that dental plaque doesn’t just stay on your teeth, it can also move to the gums to cause redness and inflammation. If left untreated, the early stages of gum disease can develop into gingivitis and the more serious periodontitis. Once gum disease has progressed to periodontitis, it is irreversible and can even cause tooth loss.

It’s important to remember that your oral health is connected to your overall health. This means that if you have too much plaque buildup, it can enter the bloodstream and travel to other parts of the body. For example, plaque buildup in arteries contributes to heart disease.

How to Prevent Dental Plaque Buildup

Dental plaque buildup can be easily prevented by practicing good oral hygiene and scheduling a teeth cleaning and dental exam with one of our dentists every 6 months. We also recommend reducing how many sugary foods and drinks you consume on a regular basis.

  • Brush and Floss Your Teeth Daily
    Are you brushing your teeth twice a day? Most dentists would prefer their patients brush after every meal, but you should especially brush your teeth before you go to bed. The longer dental plaque is allowed to sit on your teeth, the more of a chance it has to create cavity-causing acids. We also recommend flossing once daily to remove dental plaque that could be hiding in between teeth or along the gum line.
  • Use Fluoride Mouth Rinse

    Fluoride helps to strengthen your tooth enamel so it’s more resistant against acid attacks from plaque. We recommend using fluoride mouth rinse once a day to help maintain a healthy smile. Yet, it’s important to remember that using fluoride mouth rinse is not a substitute for brushing and flossing daily. Instead, you’ll need to add fluoride mouth rinse to your daily oral hygiene routine.

  • Reduce Sugary Foods and Drinks
    Take care not to eat too many sweets and starches this holiday season. While you may love eating sugary foods, so do the bacteria in your mouth. When bacteria consume sugar from food particles left on your teeth, they are able to produce an acid that causes cavities.
  • Schedule Teeth Cleanings
    Visit our dentists regularly for professional teeth cleanings and dental checkups. During your appointment, one of our dental hygienists will use a special tool called a scaler to remove plaque. They’ll also be able to remove tartar (hardened plaque), which can’t be removed at home.

Request an Appointment

Drs. Sarah Palmer and Amy Harmon are dentists in Grandville, MI who are accepting new patients! If it’s been more than 6 months since your last teeth cleaning, schedule an appointment with our office at (616) 534-0080. We hope to hear from you soon!