What Is Plaque and How Does it Form?

159311405When you fail to practice proper dental hygiene and meet with your Tucson dentist on a regular basis, you are putting yourself at risk for the formation of plaque. Plaque can lead to a number of problems including tooth decay and gum disease. Keep reading to find out what plaque is and how it is formed.

Identifying Plaque

You must be able to identify your plaque problem before you can treat it. Plaque is a colorless film that builds up on your teeth when you fail to remove bacteria and sugar. This film can lead to oral complications such as cavities, gum disease, and tooth loss. One of the many purposes of brushing and flossing your teeth is to move the agents that create plaque from your mouth. Proper dental hygiene allows you to remove plaque from your mouth every day.


Plaque is not always a problem; it only becomes a problem when it is allowed to remain in the mouth. Bacteria grow in the mouth with the help of food debris and saliva, and eventually they combine with sugars to form a sticky film on the teeth. Plaque then creates acids that attack your tooth enamel and cause decay. If you do not brush your teeth and remove this plaque from your mouth, it can develop into tartar over time. Tartar is a more difficult substance to remove and can lead to gingivitis and tooth loss.


The key to preventing plaque is practicing dental hygiene. Brush your teeth twice each day with fluoride toothpaste. Floss daily and see your dentist on a regular basis. It helps to avoid smoking cigarettes or other tobacco products as well as consuming too many sugary snacks. A mouth rinse may also help you prevent the development of plaque.

For more information about plaque and how it forms, please contact Manela Dental or visit our website. Our Tucson dentistry practice is happy to serve the area with a variety of procedures and treatments. If you live in the area and would like to learn more about our services, feel free to call us at (520) 744-2039.