October 30, 2009

Get Rid of Plaque & Tartar on Teeth with Natural Remedies

Posted in Category : Common Ailments

Plaque can be described as a sticky, soft and nearly invisible film of bacteria, which accumulates on your teeth, gums, tongue as well as dental restorations like dentures, crowns and fillings. The bacteria present in this film are usually responsible for cavities, tooth decay and periodontal or gum diseases. Plaque occurs right from the beginning and is found in newborns too, after the first ten to twelve hours or life. The longer this substance stays in your mouth, the more trouble it is likely to cause. Certain bacteria in plaque feed off fermentable carbs and produce an acid that eats away at the tooth enamel, causing decay and cavities.

Tartar refers to the white and chalky calcified material that forms mainly on and around the teeth. Also known as calculus, it usually contains bacterial debris and plaque. Tartar makes it easier for plaque to stick around, though it is primarily regarded as a cosmetic problem by most people.

Tartar and plaque generally form above and below the gum line. Most people visit a dental hygienist in order to remove plaque from below the gum line or the tartar from anywhere in the mouth.

How to get rid of tartar at home?

Once the tartar cements itself to the teeth, professional cleaning is required to get rid of it. Therefore, it is important to get rid of the tartar before it has the chance to harden around the teeth. Some of the home remedies to get rid of and prevent the buildup of tartar include –

  • Hydrogen peroxide: Prepare your own tartar removal mouthwash at home by mixing 1 tablespoon of an antiseptic mouthwash with 3 tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide (3%). Swish the mixture around your mouth, making sure that your teeth and gums are coated thoroughly. After swishing the mixture in your mouth for a minute, tilt your head back and gargle. Be careful about not swallowing the liquid, because hydrogen peroxide can make you throw up. The solution should foam as the peroxide reacts with the tartar to create oxygen bubbles. These oxygen bubbles loosen the bits of tartar stuck to your teeth
  • Baking soda: The mildly abrasive and bleaching properties present in baking soda make it quite effective in the removal of plaque and tartar from the teeth. Prepare a thick paste using baking soda and a small amount of water. Apply the paste on to a toothbrush and brush your teeth with it for at least two minutes. Rinse your mouth with cool water after you are done brushing. However, excessive use of baking soda should be strictly avoided, as it can damage tooth enamel
  • Orange rind oil: Take some orange peels and squeeze the oil from them. Apply this oil directly on to your teeth and leave it on for at least an hour or so, before brushing your teeth normally
  • Cheese: Eating a small amount (less than an ounce) of aged cheese before each meal can neutralize the acids in the mouth that affect the production of plaque. The older the cheese, the more effective it is bound to be

The use of certain chewing sticks is also said to help remove plaque. These home remedies are quite safe if used correctly, but it is important to check with a doctor before trying any of them.

Preventing plaque and tartar is a lot easier than trying to get rid of them. Follow the steps given below in order to prevent the buildup of plaque and tartar –

  • Brush your teeth twice a day, for at least two minutes each time. Focus on areas where the tartar tends to build up
  • Floss your teeth at least once a day or if possible, after each meal
  • Rinse your mouth thoroughly with an anti-plaque mouthwash
  • Use the right toothpaste, toothbrush and mouthwash, as recommended by your dentist
  • Schedule regular appointments with your dentist