Dental plaque


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Dental plaque and its contents. Harm caused by dental plaque and how to control plaque.

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Dental plaque

  1. 1. Dental Plaque Dr. Rupali Jakhadi, Smile Care For more details visit
  2. 2. What is Dental Plaque For more details visit Dental plaque is a biofilm which builds up on and surrounding the teeth. Plaque is Sticky and usually colorless. It forms every day on teeth.
  3. 3. Plaque is formed by microorganisms embedded in the matrix made up of saliva. Most of the microorganisms are bacteria (mainly Steptococcus mutans and anaerobes). The anaerobes include Fusobacterium and Actinobacteria. The composition varies by the location of plaque. Contents of Plaque For more details visit
  4. 4. How the Plaque Causes Harm For more details visit The microorganisms found in plaque are usually seen in mouth at all times and are harmless. They feed on many of the foods we eat. Carbohydrates and sugars are their favorite. Plaque sticks to the teeth. If not removed properly by tooth brushing it will build up in thick layers. Those Microorganisms which are nearest to the tooth convert to anaerobic respiration. In this stage they produce acids.
  5. 5. For more details visit How the Plaque Causes Harm Being the thick film saliva can not penetrate and cannot neutralize the acid produced by bacteria. These acids demineralise the closest tooth surface. Thus it will lead to dental caries.
  6. 6. For more details visit How the Plaque Causes Harm Plaque also causes irritation of gums and leads to gingivitis and if not removed, further will lead to periodontitis and tooth loss. Plaque can also mineralize and become hard called calculus (tartar) which invites more deposits causing more gum problems.
  7. 7. For more details visit How the Plaque Causes Harm
  8. 8. For more details visit How the Plaque Causes Harm
  9. 9. For more details visit Testing of Plaque Plaque is usually clear and can not be seen by necked eyes unless it is colored with a special dye. Dentist can identify plaque with dental instruments. Testing of plaque should be done after brushing and flossing to see if any residual plaque is remaining. It can be done by two ways.
  10. 10. For more details visit Testing of Plaque <ul><li>In this method, special tablets containing red dye is chewed thoroughly and mixture of saliva and dye is moved over teeth and gums for about 30sec. Mouth is then rinsed. The unremoved plaque gets stained pink which can be removed later on by brushing. </li></ul><ul><li>In second method a special fluorescent solution is swirled around the mouth. Mouth is then rinsed with water and teeth and gums are examined while shining an ultraviolet plaque light in to the mouth. There are no pink stains in mouth with this method. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Control of Plaque For more details visit <ul><li>Some of the plaque is removed by saliva and by movement of cheeks and tongue over the teeth. </li></ul><ul><li>Regular brushing and flossing everyday (at least two times) is necessary to remove the plaque. </li></ul><ul><li>Regular professional cleaning by a dentist is the best way to get rid of the plaque and tartar. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Keep Smiling For more details visit
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