Dental tartar originates due to the accumulation of bacterial plaque. Is it possible to remove it naturally? Find out in this space
Is it possible to remove dental tartar naturally? Dental tartar is also known as “tartar” or “dental calculus.” It consists of the hardening of bacterial plaque on the surface of the teeth, usually due to poor oral hygiene.
This buildup can be seen below the gumline, on the teeth, and on fillings or other dental work. If not removed properly, it can damage the enamel and lead to disorders like cavities.
Since its accumulation is common, many people seek natural solutions to remove it. However, getting rid of it is not so straightforward. Although there is a wide variety of home remedies that promise to help, the truth is that professional intervention is required. We’ll explain more about this below.
What is dental tartar and why does it form?
As detailed in an article published in the Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology, dental tartar is a calcified mass that typically forms in areas of the mouth with a constant supply of saliva.
To be more precise, it is mineralized dental plaque that forms due to bacterial growth and the accumulation of food residues. Typically, this is continually removed with good brushing.
However, if there are poor hygiene habits or if it accumulates excessively, it leads to tartar. In most cases, this appears as a sticky, clay-like film of a yellowish-white color.
But when they occur subgingivally, they are not clinically visible and can take on a color that varies from dark brown to green and black. Due to their complexity, the dentist’s intervention becomes essential. Without treatment, they can lead to other dental disorders such as bad breath, gingivitis, and cavities.
Causes of dental tartar Dental
tartar forms due to a chemical reaction that occurs through the action of saliva and food residues. This leads to the hardening of bacterial plaque, especially when there is inadequate oral hygiene.
Sometimes, changes in saliva pH contribute to the formation of these deposits. Other factors such as high sugar consumption and smoking are also associated.
Is it possible to remove dental tartar naturally?
Before exploring the most commonly used home remedies to naturally remove dental tartar, it’s important to clarify that there is no natural solution that can eliminate this calcification.
While a wide variety of ingredients are described in popular literature for their supposed benefits, the truth is that there is no evidence of their effectiveness. On the contrary, it has been determined that their long-term use can harm dental enamel and lead to complications in oral health.
In most cases, this procedure is painless and does not entail complications. However, if there is severe dental sensitivity, the dentist may opt to use spray anesthesia. The entire process takes about half an hour, and it is recommended to have it done once or twice a year.
So, what is the correct way to remove dental tartar? Once the hard plaque film has formed, it is necessary to visit the dentist to receive an effective treatment. In the clinic, the professional will perform an oral cleaning, also known as “tartrectomy” or “dental prophylaxis.
Strategies for naturally removing dental tartar
As we’ve explained, once tartar has formed, it’s not possible to remove it naturally unless you visit a dentist for professional treatment. Despite this, there are several strategies that can help control or prevent its formation.
Using an electric toothbrush
Both manual and electric toothbrushes can help remove plaque buildup between the teeth. However, the latter seems to have an advantage.
Choosing a fluoride toothpaste
Oral hygiene products play a significant role in mouth cleaning. When it comes to removing dental plaque, preventing tartar, and cavities, it’s best to opt for a fluoride toothpaste.
As outlined in a study published through Materia Socio Medica, fluoride is a substance that increases the resistance of dental enamel to the effects of acids produced by bacterial growth and food residues.
In general, children over the age of three should use a toothpaste with a fluoride concentration of 1350 to 1500 ppm. However, this amount can vary for younger children and adults.
Using dental floss and interdental brushes
The best complement to dental brushing is the use of dental floss or interdental brushes. These tools are essential for removing plaque that accumulates between the teeth and, thus, reducing tartar formation.
In fact, as detailed in an article published in NIH News in Health, their regular use reduces mild gum disease or gingivitis better than using only a toothbrush. Additionally, in general, it significantly reduces plaque after 1 to 3 months of use.
Now, through Evidence-Based Dentistry, it was reported that the use of interdental brushes removes more dental plaque than brushing and dental floss. These brushes allow cleaning in hard-to-reach areas between the teeth and gums.
Using an antibacterial mouthwash
Research through Cureus Journal of Medical Science reported that antimicrobial mouthwashes play a significant role in preventing bacterial plaque—the primary cause of tartar—by inhibiting the growth, metabolism, and colonization of oral bacteria.
In particular, mouthwashes containing chlorhexidine gluconate were found to be quite effective in reducing plaque buildup. In fact, experts categorized it as the “gold standard for plaque control.” They also noted that its effects are enhanced when combined with chitosan.
Maintaining regular oral hygiene habits
Beyond using the mentioned products to eliminate tartar presence on the teeth, it’s essential to ensure regular hygiene habits. What does this mean? Simply put, it’s necessary to brush at least 2 times a day, ideally 3 times or after each meal.
Maintaining a healthy diet
Evidence suggests that regular consumption of sugary and starchy foods helps create an ideal environment for bacterial growth in the mouth. Additionally, these foods promote the release of harmful acids.
If the goal is to remove dental plaque and tartar, it is essential to control the intake of these products. Instead, it is advisable to increase the presence of healthy foods in the diet, such as fruits and vegetables. It is also recommended to ensure optimal water intake.
Avoiding tobacco Tobacco
consumption is one of the risk factors for dental tartar and periodontal disease. As detailed in a study published in Infection and Immunity, smokers exhibit higher levels of certain proinflammatory cytokines involved in periodontitis. Additionally, they have been observed to be more susceptible to the colonization of bacteria that form biofilms on dental surfaces.