Foods and Habits That Increase Plaque Buildup

Dental plaque is a soft, sticky film of bacteria that builds up on your teeth. These harmful germs cause tooth decay and can lead to gum disease if not removed regularly with brushing and flossing. There are two factors that cause plaque to form on our teeth: the foods we eat and our oral hygiene habits. If plaque is not removed regularly (daily) it can harden in a matter of hours. When it becomes hardened and calcified, it develops into tartar. At this point, the only way to remove it is by a professional dentist or dental hygienist.

What To Avoid To Have A Healthy Smile

When it comes to something as damaging as plaque, it’s important to be mindful of your oral hygiene routine. Dr. James Reisman and Dr. Jordana Contrucci at C R Dental Group share some information on what to avoid to achieve and maintain a healthy smile as reported by

  • Eating sugar frequently – The pathogens in our mouths thrive on simple sugars, which results in more plaque than other foods like vegetables or proteins. Consuming in moderation is fine, but drink water while doing so and wait 30 minutes to brush afterwards.
  • Not drinking water – It is not only essential to our bodily health, but it’s just as important to our smiles. It acts as a buffer between the harsh acids of foods and our tooth enamel. It also helps balance oral bacteria, replenish saliva and boost hydration throughout the body.
  • Forgetting to brush before bed – Brushing twice a day doesn’t give plaque much of a chance to build up if you are doing it daily, and correctly. Forgetting to brush at bedtime leaves a solid window for bacteria to grow, and plaque that has built up all day now has a better chance of wreaking havoc on your mouth.
  • Not flossing – Because brushing alone cannot reach all the surfaces of the teeth, flossing once a day is necessary to remove plaque between the teeth. Otherwise, the bacteria builds up and can cause enamel erosion, tooth decay and bad breath. 
  • Skipping regular checkups – Despite our best efforts at home care, it is still necessary to see your dentist and hygienist at least twice a year to monitor your oral health and to check for new decay.

You Can Start Now

At C R Dental Group, located in Dallas, Texas, we encourage you to take charge of your oral health. It’s as important to your body as eating right and exercising. Even if you are guilty of neglecting your teeth in the past, you can start today by setting a routine, avoiding bad habits and scheduling an appointment with your dental office. Remember, it’s never too late to begin taking care of your smile!