Not to be confused with the mathematic calculus, this condition threatens the good health of your teeth and gums and is not a good look. Two different types of calculus can be treated, the first is sub-gingival calculus which is a problem along the roots. The second type is supra-gingival which is more visible on the teeth.
Tartar generally forms in the areas of your mouth which hold your salivary glands, which are located on the lingual side of the inferior incisors and labial side of the superior molars. It is a calcified form of dental plaque, meaning it is porous and rough. It allows a new dental plaque retention that will calcify and add to the existing coat. Made up of tiny empty cells, not living bacteria, calculus is not in itself harmful to you, but the accumulation can allow gingival lesions to grow, promoting inflammation and later, bleeding gums. If that bleeding ever because serious there will most likely be osseous lesions found, which will lead to tooth mobility and bad breath.
To tackle the calcification of dental plaque you must frequently clean your mouth by removing the calculus coating fixed on the dental surfaces. This is done using high frequency ultrasound vibrations and water irrigation. This method allows the dislocation of calculus and other unsavory elements on the teeth without damaging the tooth enamel. Some patients going through this cleansing treatment will feel some small pain due to their having loose teeth. Some other patients still will be required to follow certain specific treatments, having to go through a preliminary antibiotic treatment or a month long program using the Mons paste prior to the cleaning.
While catching calculus quickly is important, different people will require different frequencies of cleansing treatment, and will be indicated by the patient’s sensitivity to periodontal diseases or even how well they normally brush their teeth. Typically for a patient with a fairly healthy mouth this cleaning can be done once every few years, but a patient with a lot of calculus and other problems, again even down to how well they brush their teeth, will require cleaning once every 3 or 4 months. It is for these reasons that dentists will recommend a thorough teeth cleaning once every year, along with your general medical checkup, unless you require a more regular treatment.
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