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Tartar or Calculus on Teeth – Why Do I Get It?

Tartar or Calculus on Teeth – Why Do I Get It?

This information about tartar brought to you by our wonderful treatment assistant, Julie

Why do I get Tartar ?

Moderate tartar deposits between lower front teeth - moderate gum inflammation

Moderate tartar deposits between lower front teeth – moderate gum inflammation

 

Even with proper tooth brushing at home, you still have bacteria in your mouth.  This bacteria mixed with proteins and food byproducts forms a sticky film on your teeth called plaque.  When plaque accumulates and is not removed from your teeth (brushing and flossing removes the soft plaque), it can harden into a mineral called tartar or calculus.  This mineral can be a dark brown or yellow, or even tooth colored.  The only way to remove tartar is to have it scrapped off by a dental professional.

Periodontal disease and gum disease following treatment - bone loss remains but gums have healed.

Periodontal disease and gum disease following treatment – bone loss remains but gums have healed.

See tartar between teeth.  Periodontal disease and gum disease.

See tartar between teeth. Periodontal disease and gum disease.

If tartar is left on your teeth, it is not possible to clean your teeth properly.  Bacteria remain in the rough surface of the tartar.  This can lead to tooth decay, and gum disease, and possible loss of your teeth.  To help prevent tarter buildup, brush your teeth at least twice a day (studies show you can remove more plaque by using an electric tooth brush) and floss once a day.  You can also use a tartar control toothpaste, to help reduce tarter buildup.  Some people get tartar that forms under the gums, and do not realize they have tartar, so it is a good idea to visit your dental office regularly (usually twice a year) for oral exams and cleanings.

Our office in Grand Junction, Colorado would be happy to answer and questions you have about this topic or any other dental concern.  You can call us at (970) 242-3635.