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Plaque and Tarter: What You Need To Know Marietta, GA

Plaque and Tarter: What You Need To Know

Plaque and tartar. We hear these terms often, but do you know exactly what they mean or understand the difference between the two? Once you do, you are sure to gain important answers to questions about your dental care, including how to prevent gum disease and cavities, why we need to brush twice a day and why it is so important that we visit the dentist for a routine cleaning.

What Is Plaque?
Plaque is a clear, sticky deposit of bacteria that can adhere to your teeth and gums. It is known for sticking so strongly that you can’t simply rinse it off. Instead, plaque must be removed by brushing or flossing. When it comes to plaque, time is of the essence. It only takes a short period of time after eating or drinking for plaque to begin to form; that’s why dentists recommend brushing twice a day. The more you disturb this bacteria by diligent brushing, the less chance plaque has to build up on your teeth. Once plaque builds up, it can produce tooth stains and start damaging your teeth and gums. The bacteria in plaque releases an acid attack on your tooth enamel, which can eventually lead to cavities. Plaque buildup along your gum line is the primary cause of gum disease
What Is Tartar?
Put simply, tartar is hardened plaque. In other words, if you have failed to remove plaque through brushing or flossing, it will become hard deposits of calculus (or tartar). Perhaps the most important aspect to know about tartar is that you cannot remove it by yourself. Tartar can only be removed by your dentist during a professional teeth cleaning – hence the reason you need to make that routine dental appointment every six months. When tartar is left along the gum line, the tissue can become red and swollen and bleed easily. Excessive tartar buildup along your gums can quickly result in gum disease.

Fighting Back

Now that we are all aware of the unwanted presence and dangers of plaque and tartar in our mouths, it is important to know how we can fight back. Some patients are more susceptible to plaque and tartar buildup than others. However, we can all take some steps to eliminate these smile dangers. Here are some tips on managing plaque and controlling tartar:

  • Brushing twice a day for 2 minutes each time
  • Floss daily
  • See your dentist for a professional cleaning twice a year
  • Avoid starchy and sugary foods and drinks
  • Eat plaque-fighting foods such as cheese and vegetables
  • Choose a tartar-control toothpaste
  • Use mouthwash with antibacterial agents

At Gilreath Family Dentistry, we hope that by educating you on the ins and outs of plaque and tartar, you can maintain a healthier, more vibrant smile. To learn if your dental health is threatened by excessive plaque or tartar buildup, call us today for an appointment. We can save you from cavities and gum disease before it is too late.

Posted on behalf of Dr. Paul Gilreath IV, Gilreath Family Dentistry

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Our Client Reviews
Gilreath Family Dentistry

5.0 / 5.0

Based on 307 reviews


Dr. Gilreath is incredible with my kids. They love going to the dentist now! And this busy mom loves the warm neck wraps, the soft music and enjoying a latte while I relax!

Kenneth H.

Was lucky enough to find these guys when I got insurance that my old dentist did not take. Very professional and friendly staff! Office has the latest greatest technology as well. If you're looking for a new dentist, search no further!

Susie L.

Very personable and friendly, they took the time to go over my complex dental history and did not pressure me into anything. They gave their recommendations and priced out any options I had. Great group!

Camille Y.

Dr. Gilreath and his staff are top notch. I received the best cleaning I've ever had while watching my favorite show. The Doctor and his staff were all very polite, friendly, and courteous. They explained everything to me clearly and presented me with options in a gentle way that didn't make me feel pressured at all. It's obvious they really care about the wellbeing of their patients. The facility and equipment is really nice as well. I will definitely be back!

Juan R.

Always willing to work around my kids and my schedules. Today I had a long appointment. They started on time and always made sure I was comfortable and that the pain was managed so the procedure could’ve been completed without issues. Very courteous and professional staff.

Lucia B.

Awesome dental practice! The staff is friendly and efficient. Dr. Gilreath is thorough and versed in the latest technology and procedures. I love that he can make crowns in the office while you wait (so no walking around with a temporary crown for days or weeks). I would strongly recommend this dental practice!

Matthew W.

I've been going here for about a little over a year now. I've had a few cleanings, a filling, and started Invisiline so far. Hands down, the best run dental office I've ever been to. In the past at other dental offices I often had to wait 30 or more minutes beyond my appointment time before being seen. At Dr. Gilreath's office I've been seen on time every time. They seem to have systems in place to make every part of your visit run smoothly. From how they took x-rays, to billing and appointments, to the work done by the hygienist/dentist, everything seems to run like a well oiled machine. On top of that all the staff are all friendly, helpful and knowledgeable. The office space itself is also quite nice. Very clean, well maintained, and seems very "up to date" with their equipment. If you're looking for a dentist and are anywhere in the northwest metro area I would highly recommend Dr. Gilreath.

Jhion R.

The staff is always so courteous and personable. They make us feel like family every time we have an appointment. Service is excellent, too. My wife recently went for a cleaning and Dr. Gilreath noticed a chip in one of her fillings. He knew we recently had another baby and that her time was very limited so he went ahead and did the filling right then and there, an extra thirty minutes tops. Dr. Gilreath is always looking at the big picture and really knows his stuff. We will never go anywhere else

Our Office

Gilreath Family Dentistry

200 White St NW
Marietta, GA 30060

Call to Schedule an Appointment:
(770) 796-7081

Gilreath Family Dentistry waiting room Marietta GA.