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How to Remove Tartar from Teeth

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A woman brushing her teeth in the mirror to maintain good oral hygiene and help remove tartar buildup.

Maintaining good oral hygiene is essential to keep your teeth and gums healthy for life. However, if you’re not consistent with your oral care routine, the plaque buildup can harden and turn into tartar, which can lead to gum disease, tooth decay, and bad breath.

Tartar is challenging to remove with regular brushing and flossing, and you may require professional cleaning to restore your oral health. A good oral care routine, a healthy diet, and consistent dental cleanings and exams can help remove harmful tartar buildup.

A visit to Cooper Dental in downtown Calgary or Cougar Ridge can help remove tartar buildup and restore a healthier smile. 

Tips for Removing Tartar from Your Teeth

Brush Your Teeth Twice a Day

The first step in removing tartar from your teeth is to brush them twice a day with a fluoridated toothpaste.

  • Use an electric toothbrush and try to cover a couple of teeth at a time. Hold it at 45 degrees towards the gum surface for a few seconds, then move on to the next couple of teeth
  • Use a soft-bristled brush and hold it at a 45-degree angle to the teeth.
  • Brush in circular motions for two minutes, covering all surfaces of your teeth, including the gum line and the back molars.

Regular brushing can keep plaque from accumulating and hardening into tartar, leading to cavities and gingivitis. But brushing alone only cleans 65% of the tooth surface.

Floss Every Day

Flossing is just as crucial as brushing to maintain good oral hygiene and cleans the remaining 35% of the tooth surface. Flossing removes food particles and plaque between your teeth and along the gum line, preventing tartar buildup.

  • Use a piece of floss that’s about 18 inches long.
  • Slide it gently between each tooth in a C-shaped motion.

Flossing before brushing can loosen any built-up tartar or plaque, making it easier to remove with a toothbrush.

Use a Waterpik

Using a Waterpik in your oral hygiene routine can help prevent tartar buildup by washing away food particles and removing plaque from your teeth and gums. The pulsating water stream can reach areas that traditional brushing and flossing might miss. Water flossers can be a great option for:

  • Those who struggle with traditional flossing
  • People with braces or other dental appliances 

While a Waterpik is a great option to add to your oral hygiene routine, it is not a substitute for regular cleanings with your dental professional.

Use a Tartar Control Mouthwash

There are many tartar control mouthwashes available that can help keep your teeth clean and prevent tartar buildup. These mouthwashes contain ingredients like fluoride, which strengthens the teeth and kills bacteria that cause plaque.

  • Use the mouthwash after brushing and flossing.
  • Swish it around your mouth for 30 seconds before spitting it out.

Regular use of a tartar control mouthwash can reduce the amount of tartar on your teeth and prevent new buildup.

Maintain a Healthy Diet

A healthy diet can also keep your teeth free from tartar buildup.

  • Avoid sugary and starchy foods that can lead to plaque formation.
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables that contain vitamin C, which helps to promote healthy gums.

Drink plenty of water to wash away food particles and prevent dry mouth, which can lead to bacterial overgrowth and plaque development.

Maintain Consistent Dental Appointments

If you already have tartar buildup on your teeth, you need professional help from your dental hygienist and dentist. They use special tools to remove the tartar from your teeth, including scaling and polishing.

  • Ultrasonic cleaners quickly debride most of the tartar on the teeth.
  • Scaling involves using a handheld tool to scrape the remaining tartar off your teeth.
  • Polishing smooths the surface of the teeth and removes stains and plaque.
  • Fluoride varnish helps strengthen your enamel against bacteria and plaque buildup.

Regular professional cleanings can keep your teeth tartar-free and reduce the risk of gum disease.

If you’re one of the many people who experience dental anxiety, the thought of going to the dentist can trigger feelings of fear and unease, leading to missed appointments and significant dental problems. There are options available to keep your teeth plaque-free while limiting your dental anxiety.

What Is the Guided Biofilm Therapy (GBT) Device?

Guided Biofilm Therapy (GBT) is a new approach to dental cleaning that uses gentle and effective technology to remove dental plaque and improve oral health.

At its core, GBT is a comprehensive method that uses airflow polishing, ultrasonic scaling, and targeted laser therapy to clean teeth thoroughly and reduce inflammation in the gums.

How Can GBT Help with Dental Anxiety?

This approach is much gentler and less invasive than traditional dental cleaning and can be especially beneficial for patients who have dental anxiety and sensitivity.

The device offers a tailored approach to dental treatment. The GBT device can remove plaque, food debris, and other bacterial buildup from your mouth with its unique laser therapy and cleaning techniques.

Additionally, GBT cleans teeth more gently than traditional scaling methods, which can make the process feel less invasive for patients. Other benefits of GBT include the following:

  • It can help prevent dental issues that may cause more extensive, invasive procedures down the road.
  • Regular cleaning with the GBT device can prevent cavities and gum disease, which can be painful and costly to treat if not detected and addressed early.
  • This preventive approach can be life-changing for patients with negative dental experiences.

Perhaps the most significant advantage of the GBT device for individuals with dental anxiety is that it can provide a more comfortable experience during dental appointments. Patients who utilize GBT have reported fewer negative sensations like:

  • Pain
  • Sensitivity
  • Discomfort during the cleaning process

GBT’s gentle nature and multifaceted approach to oral care may make it an excellent choice for those hesitant to undergo traditional dental procedures.

A female dentist in blue scrubs holding a clipboard and smiling at her patient in the dental chair.

Remove & Prevent Tartar Buildup with Help from Cooper Dental

Removing tartar from teeth isn’t a one-time process. You need to maintain good oral hygiene habits to keep your teeth clean and healthy. Schedule an appointment at Cooper Dental for check-ups and cleanings to prevent tartar buildup and keep your smile bright.

Written by Dr. Deborah Cooper

Dr. Deborah Cooper completed her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree in 1992 from the University of Alberta. With over 30 years of experience in general dentistry, her passion for her profession is evident in how she strives for excellence. She attends dental courses to stay up-to-date on the most current developments in dentistry. Dr. Cooper has a special interest in conservative aesthetic dentistry and creating natural-looking smiles with healthy bites. For Dr. Cooper, individual patient care has always been her top priority. Many of her patients have been with her for well over 30 years. She also values her team and has many long-standing team members.
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