Tartar — also called dental calculus — is a concrete-like substance that sticks to your teeth, just below the gum line. It forms when plaque goes untreated, hardens, and turns into a yellowish-brown color.
Tartar isn’t uncommon — around two-thirds of adults have it on their teeth — but it can be dangerous, resulting in various dental issues. Here are three problems that can arise from tartar and why you need a Pekin dentist to get rid of it.
1. Bad Breath
Tartar causes small openings (called ‘pockets’) to appear between your teeth and gums. You might develop bad breath when food and bacteria get stuck in these openings. Mouthwash or a breath freshener might mask the odor for a while, but only a teeth cleaning can solve this problem.
2. Bleeding Gums
A buildup of plaque on your gum line might cause your gums to bleed, potentially resulting in inflamed gums or a condition called gingivitis.
If a dentist doesn’t remove the plaque, it can turn into tartar, which might cause your gums to bleed even more. In the worst-case scenario, increased bleeding can lead to periodontitis — a dangerous gum condition that can make your teeth fall out.
Because tartar forms a hard substance on your teeth, you might find it more difficult to brush and floss. Unfortunately, poor oral hygiene can cause a cavity, which forms a hole in your teeth. If left untreated, a cavity can lead to tooth loss and other health conditions.
How a Pekin Dentist Can Treat Tartar
You can’t remove tartar safely at home. A dental professional uses specialist tools, such as a metal scaler, to scrape away the substance from your teeth. If you have excessive tartar buildup, a dentist might suggest a deeper cleaning with root planing, which cleans teeth infected by bacteria.
There’s a misconception that tartar removal is extremely painful, but the right dentist can relieve any discomfort with correct and safe techniques. Working with a professional will not only get rid of tartar but improve your overall oral health.
If ignored, tartar can cause problems such as bad breath, bleeding gums, and cavities. That’s why you need a Pekin dentist to get rid of this substance for you. Treatments include scaling and root planing.
Dr. David Kuban, DDS, provides a wide range of tartar removal services for patients in Pekin, Illinois. Learn more.
Content found on this blog is intended for educational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for professional judgement, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Please speak with a professional if you have concerns about your oral health.