What Is Plaque And How You Can Prevent It

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What Is Plaque And How You Can Prevent It
Almost 70% of Canadians will experience gum disease? It is the most commonly seen dental problem in Canada and can lead to infections, tooth loss, and more. Plaque is one of the biggest culprits of gum diseases, and it can start developing quickly, especially with wire braces. Luckily, there are simple, effective, and cost-friendly solutions to beautiful smiles without increasing plaque. Are you still interested? We have put together a complete guide on plaque prevention and achieving that perfect smile, so keep reading for more information!

What Is Tooth Plaque?

At its core - plaque is bacteria. It is colorless and only evident whenrunning the tongue over the smoothsurfaces ofteeth.When we feel a coating over our teeth after we eat and before brushing our teeth, it is the beginning of plaque developing. Before we start worrying too much,everyone deals with it. However, plaque starts becoming dangerous when it hardens into tartar and goes untreated.What are some foods that cause plaque to start developing onour teeth?
  • Carbohydrates
  • Soda
  • Sugar
Bacteria use carbohydrates as fuel and start spreading throughout the mouth, creating a world of havoc for our health.

Plaque and Health Risks

Occasional plaque isn't necessarily harmful when we follow good oral hygiene. These steps include: brushing teeth, flossing, and seeing a dentist regularly. Ifwe don't adhere to proper oral hygiene or are at higher risk of plaqueon teeth,thenthere is a concern fordeveloping:
  • Gingivitis
  • Periodontal disease
  • Tooth decay
  • Cavities
  • Infections
Unfortunately, some of the more severe gum diseases pose other health concerns. One study looked at patients with gingivitis and periodontitis compared to patients without gum disease. The results were staggering - mental health illness risks rose approximately 37% after three years. Autoimmune disease risk increased by 33%, and cardiovascular disease by 18%. Even Type 2 diabetes rose by almost 26% in this cohort. Overall, researchers could conclude that untreated gum diseases can significantly increase one's risk of other chronic health conditions.

The First Sign of Risk

Gingivitis is the first sign of poor oral health and the risk for periodontitis (gum disease). We can stop tooth loss at this stage by gettingqualitydental care. Gingivitis starts with excessive plaque build-up and causes inflammation around the gum line where bacteria congregate. Eventually, gums can begin receding from the tooth and create tooth loss and other diseases. Sometimes, medication and medical diagnoses can increase a person's risk of gingivitis. What is the best way to start combating gingivitis?
  • Quit smoking
  • Good oral hygiene
  • Deep clean teeth
  • Medication
  • Surgery
In most instances, skilled dentistsand dental hygienists can perform various deep cleaning techniques thathelp patients avoid surgery. Good oral hygiene may seem like a simple step, but a little goes a long way. Permanent retainers and metal or wire braces can make oral care more difficult.

Hidden Dangers of Wire Braces

Wire braces can help straighten teeth and give us that award-winning smile, but at what cost? Experts have found that plaque can build up around brackets and behind the wire. One study examined different bacteria before, during, and after wire brace fittings. Periodontal bacteria started popping up only a few months after braces were fitted. The good news? After removing braces, this bacteria decreased. However, throughout wearing braces, periodontal bacteria continued increasing. Researchers suggested that this was largely unavoidable, and the only suggestion was to continue with guidelines outlined by orthodontists for cleaning with braces. The best-case scenario is it only causes staining and white spots. In many situations, simple teeth whitening kits or procedures can remove them. However, we now know that untreated plaque can create higher risks for cavities and other gum diseases. Luckily, there are other options out there that can help straighten teeth without creating more oral health risks.

What Are Custom Clear Aligners?

Wire braces are a thing of the past, and more people have chosen clear aligners. These teeth straightening kits providea setof invisible aligners in three simple steps:
  • Creating impressions
  • Mapping a treatment plan
  • Wearing clear retainer
Most people need multiple retainer kits once teeth begin straightening, and kits will include different retainer stages. Typically, teeth start shifting every few weeks, and a new retainer is sent.

Benefits of Clear Aligners

One of the main benefits of clear aligners is aesthetics. We get it - wire braces can look and feel awkward or uncomfortable. Clear aligners can give any smile a complete makeover without worrying about metal sticking into gums. Other clear aligner benefits include:
  • Removable
  • Cost-friendly
  • Less treatment time
  • No dental appointments
Clear aligners allow us to eat and drink freely; simply remove the retainer beforehand. However, it is advised that the retainers are worn for most of the day (approximately 20 to 22 hours). They are often less expensive than traditional braces, and the treatment time can be cut to as little as six months. Not everyone is a prime candidate for clear aligners. Still, it is an excellent solution for achieving a dashing smile without the hassle of scheduling and arriving for frequent orthodontic appointments.

The Perfect Smile

We all want that perfect smile without teeth decay, plaque build-up, and gum disease. Unfortunately, wire braces are notorious causes for bacteria sneaking into cracks, crevices, and gum lines. The solution? We offer customized affordable invisible aligners. These aligners are cost-friendly, and we deliver them right to your doorstep. That's right - no more orthodontic scheduling. Get started with a free assessment.
Gum Diseases. (2015). Canadian Dental Association. https://www.cda-adc.ca/en/oral_health/faqs/gum_diseases_faqs.asp University of Birmingham. (2021, December 20). Gum disease increases risk of other illness such as mental health and heart conditions, study suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 19, 2022 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/12/211220083114.htm Hersh, E. (2021, December 15). Gingivitis (Gum Disease) Overview. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/gingivitis#types-of-infections University of Bristol. (2017, July 28). Dental braces and periodontal disease. http://www.bristol.ac.uk/research/impact/dental-braces-periodontal-disease/ Cirino, E. (2021, February 1). Is Dental Discoloration Caused by Braces Permanent? Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/dental-and-oral-health/braces-stains

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