Tartar Teeth – What You Need to Know 

Tartar is one of those dental health concerns that don’t get much attention. If you brush your teeth, floss, and rinse your mouth with an antibacterial mouthwash, tartar may not be much of an issue. However, it is important to understand what it is and what kind of preventive measures you need to take to avoid teeth tartar.

What is Tartar on Teeth?

Tartar is also known as dental calculus and it is a result of the accumulation of plaque. It happens when plaque accumulates on your teeth and eventually hardens because it isn’t effectively removed. The hardened plaque remains on your teeth for a long time and can lead to a lot of dental health concerns down the line.

Tartar is often white or off-white. It develops over time and is fairly easy to notice if it is on the front of your teeth. It is both rough and porous, which means it can be a hub for hosting additional bacteria and increasing the risk of decay or cavities.

Tartar removal requires special tools and expert skills. The dentist may do it as a part of the regular teeth cleaning process. Proper dental hygiene and regular cleaning is the best way to avoid tartar formation in the first place.

Plaque vs. Tartar

Plaque is a film that forms over your teeth. It is sticky, adheres to your teeth, and carries bacteria. With proper dental hygiene and regular cleaning, you can remove the sticky film of plaque and avoid cavities down the line. A combination of teeth brushing, mouthwash rinsing, and flossing can accomplish this.

Tartar is what comes after plaque isn’t addressed. Plaque can eventually settle in one place, harden, and form tartar. Removing tartar isn’t as easy as removing plaque. You need to visit your dentist to get it done effectively.

Impact of Tartar on Teeth and Gums

Leaving tartar unaddressed can have consequences, especially over the long term. When combined with poor dental hygiene, tartar can cause permanent damage and lead to a lot of dental bills. Here’s a look at some of the consequences:

  • Maintaining Hygiene – Tartar makes it difficult to maintain proper dental hygiene. You won’t be able to brush your teeth and clean your gums as effectively as you used to as tartar will provide more room for bacteria growth.
  • Progressive Gum Disease – If tartar develops above the gum line, it may cause gum irritation, inflammation, and damage. If left untreated, that may even lead to progressive gum disease.
  • Health Issues – If you don’t remove calculus teeth, the issue may progress. Tartar can create gaps between teeth where bacteria accumulate. That can often trigger an immune response. The resultant mix can cause serious tooth, gum, and bone damage, which is often referred to as periodontitis.

Some studies have shown that bacteria that cause gum disease are also likely to cause serious heart problems as well. Just plaque removal can reduce the risk of this by a considerable margin.

How to Prevent the Formation of Teeth Calculus?

When it comes to dental health, prevention is always better than the cure. Just making a few lifestyle changes can help ensure your teeth remain healthy. Here’s a look at some tips that can help prevent tartar teeth:

1. Brushing

The best way to prevent tartar is to brush your teeth effectively twice every day. Make sure you brush your teeth for two minutes using a soft-bristled brush that can reach the difficult areas of your mouth. Brush your teeth properly for two whole minutes instead of a small 30-second dash.

Invest in a brush that can reach all areas of your mouth well. If you forget to brush for two whole minutes, which can happen with our busy lifestyles, consider getting an electronic toothbrush that has a built-in timer.

Several studies indicate that electronic toothbrushes are more effective in addressing plaque. However, make sure you buy a good-quality and approved electronic toothbrush to get the best results.

2. Consider the Right Toothpaste

Look for a toothpaste that contains fluoride, which helps repair any damage to the enamel. You should also consider a toothpaste with a substance called triclosan, which can help fight bacteria present in plaque and prevent tartar on teeth.

It is always a good idea to check the ingredients on your toothpaste and find something that suits your dental health requirements.

You can also consult with your dentist for toothpaste recommendations. They may be available to recommend a product that will have the best impact on your overall dental health.

3. Flossing

Regular brushing is great and if you do it properly, it can address most of your plaque formation issues. However, it won’t address all. Some plaque and bacteria will settle between your teeth and most brushes will not clean them effectively.

The best way to do that is to floss once every day. Flossing is the only way to remove plaque from between your teeth effectively. Without flossing, you may end up experiencing dental tartar regardless of how effective your brushing is.

Make sure you use the right flossing technique and are diligent in cleaning your teeth. There are a few videos available online that can help you understand the best flossing technique.

4. Mouthwash

Rinse your mouth with an antiseptic or antibacterial mouthwash every day. That will help kill the bacteria in your mouth and even reach hard-to-reach areas. Use a good mouthwash that is recommended by your dentist for the best results.

You can use a mouthwash every time you brush your teeth or once a day, depending on your preferences. It may be a good idea to rinse your mouth with the product every night after you have finished your meals.

5. Consider your Diet

Excessive consumption of sugary and starchy food can cause dental health problems. These items often encourage bacteria and create an environment where they can thrive. Altering your diet and having more balanced meals can help you improve your overall health.

Make sure you have a balanced diet and mind the snacks you consume between meals. This will don’t just improve your overall dental health but also improve the appearance of your teeth.

6. Avoid Smoking

Smoking can do considerable damage to your teeth and health, which is why healthcare professionals discourage this habit. Smoking causes numerous health problems but its impact on dental health is considerable.

Studies have shown that people who smoke regularly have an increased tendency to develop black tartar on teeth. This form of tartar is very noticeable and can have an impact on the appearance of your smile.

6. Regular Professional Cleaning

Getting your teeth professionally cleaned is an essential aspect of maintaining good dental hygiene. Professional cleaning and remove plaque, and any new dental calculus, and ensure there’s no build-up in the difficult areas of your teeth.

You may only need to do this once or twice a year depending on your diet and dental hygiene habits.

If you follow these tips, it will be easier to avoid teeth tartar over a long period.

How do Dentist Remove Tartar from Teeth?

How dentists address tartar depends largely on your overall dental health and the amount of tartar accumulated on your teeth. Here’s what you can expect from a dentist:

  • Examination – First, the dentist will examine your teeth carefully to see any signs of tartar.
  • Scaler – They will then use a tartar removal tool called a scaler to remove tartar formation above and below your gumline. If the accumulation is extensive, the dentist will spend more time in the area carefully scraping it off.
  • Intensive Treatment – If the tartar accumulation has been ignored for a while, it will be tough to remove with just a scaler. In these cases, dentists often combine the treatment with root planning if necessary.

This is all you need to know about tartar teeth and related dental problems. If you notice tartar build-up, schedule an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible to get the best results.


1. What does tartar look like?

Tartar is generally white or off-white and looks like a calcium build-up. The texture is crumbly and porous if the tartar is breaking off back of teeth.

2. How to remove plaque from teeth without a dentist?

Following the regular dental hygiene routine mentioned in this post will help you combat plaque effectively. However, you need to make sure you use the right tools and methods. It is still a good idea to visit the dentist every six months.

3. How to remove tartar from teeth without a dentist?

The only way to remove tartar effectively is to visit a dentist or to take preventative measures. Trying to remove tartar from your teeth without professional assistance may actually end up causing harm to the enamel of your teeth. That’s not a risk you should take.

4. How often should I visit the dentist to avoid tartar?

This depends on your lifestyle and habits. However, it is recommended that you visit the dentist at least once a year. Ideally, you should schedule a cleaning appointment once every six months for the best results.

If you want to keep your teeth free of tartar, practice good dental hygiene and visit your dentist regularly.

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