Dental calculus or plaque is a substance made by oral bacteria between the gum line and the upper part of the teeth. Dental plaque is produced when oral bacteria are combined with proteins and carbohydrates in the mouth. If dental calculus or plaque is not regularly removed, it hardens on your teeth and strongly bounds to the tooth enamel. In this case, dental calculus can only be removed by a dental professional using special appliances.
What is dental calculus?
Dental calculus is a layer of deposits on teeth and gums that not only causes bad breath but also affects the color and health of the teeth. It can also cause tooth decay and periodontal disease. The teeth of those who drink plenty of coffee and tea or smoke regularly are more likely to produce dental calculus.
In the early stages, dental plaque can be easily removed by brushing and flossing the teeth on a regular basis. However, when dental plaque gradually turns into a hard layer, you need to visit a dentist to use special dental procedures (i.e. scaling) to remove it.
What are the causes of dental calculus?
Dry mouth is a condition caused by the lack of saliva, which can play a major role in preventing tooth decay by removing food debris and dental plaque from the tooth surface. The minerals in saliva can also initially restore tooth decay. Saliva also restricts the growth of bacteria and neutralizes the harmful effects of oral acids on teeth.
Eating unhealthy snacks:
Eating sweet snacks several times a day forms a layer of sugar on the teeth and ultimately produces more acid, resulting in the increased dental plaque and erosion of teeth.
Brushing the teeth only once a day:
Brushing the teeth can remove soft dental plaque, food debris, and oral bacteria. If you do not regularly brush your teeth, dental plaque will calcify and turn into dental calculus, which cannot be easily removed. If your teeth are likely to form dental calculus, you need to brush your teeth at least two times a day for 2 minutes using a toothbrush with soft bristles; brush the upper and lower teeth separately and do not forget brushing the back of the teeth.
Brushing the teeth without toothpaste:
If you are among those who brush their teeth without toothpaste, it is better to know that toothpaste prevents tooth decay. The formulation of all types of toothpaste contains silica particles that can remove dental plaque.
Non-use of dental floss:
Cleaning interdental spaces after brushing the teeth helps to remove dental plaque from areas that are inaccessible for the toothbrush. Hence, you are recommended to floss interdental spaces every night after brushing your teeth. Flossing is also very effective for people who suffer from gum diseases.
Irregular visits to a dentist:
You should visit a dentist at least once a year for dental checkups to prevent serious dental and oral problems. Dental restoration with amalgam or composite materials placed higher or lower than the tooth surface can also cause dental plaque or calculus.
How often do we need dental scaling?
If you observe good oral health after dental scaling, you will not need to undergo this dental procedure once again for a long time. Nevertheless, if you are among those who do not regularly brush and floss their teeth, do not care much about the beauty and health of their teeth, and only brush their teeth once a day at night for 15 seconds, your teeth will be more exposed to dental plaque and even dental infections. Therefore, it is better to visit a dentist at least once a day for dental scaling.