Did you know that tartar (a hardened form of plaque) cannot be removed from teeth with a
toothbrush and floss? This stubborn substance will form on teeth if plaque is allowed to linger
for 48 hours. That means that one small mistake in your homecare can result in bacteria that are
permanently attached to your teeth, that is, unless you attend frequent dental cleanings with
your Waco TX dentist, Dr. Corbet Locke. You see, dental hygienists possess the tools necessary
to remove tartar from teeth. These tools are a variety of dental instruments that can scrape tartar
from teeth. Because tartar contains numerous harmful oral bacteria, it is very important that this
substance is not allowed to linger on teeth, which is exactly what it will do if you skip dental
cleanings. Lingering tartar presents a serious threat to your oral health not only because it creates
an increased risk of tooth decay but also because it increases the risk of gum disease.
Bacteria and Your Oral Health
The mouth is teeming with bacteria, some of them good and some of them bad. Throughout
each day, the bad bacteria will attach themselves to teeth by forming plaque, a clear, sticky
substance. Thankfully, we can clean the plaque from our teeth using a toothbrush and floss,
thereby removing the threat to our oral health temporarily. However, if we allow plaque to
linger and form tartar, the bacteria that it contains will have prolonged access to our teeth. These
bacteria will then consume sugar in the mouth, prompting them to give off an acid byproduct that
can strip the enamel from our teeth. If enough damage occurs before a dental professional can
intervene, a cavity will form, necessitating a dental filling. However, tooth decay is not the only
threat posed by lingering bacteria. The gums may also become inflamed, a hallmark of gingivitis.
Unhealthy gums can quickly worsen as gum disease progresses and attacks the ligaments and
tissues that support teeth. Eventually, without intervention, tooth loss may occur.
Dental Cleanings in Waco TX
Your Waco TX dentist, Dr. Locke, encourages his patients to attend dental cleanings with
regularity. In doing so, Dr. Locke, hopes to help his patients maintain their oral health so that
they do not need more extensive treatments. However, when patients do need these treatments,
Dr. Locke offers a variety of restorative options so that his patients can once again enjoy a
About Dr. Corbet Locke: Dr. Corbet C. Locke III, DDS is an experienced and respected dentist
serving patients in the Waco TX area. Patients can contact him at 254-776-4888 to schedule an
appointment or a consultation.
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