4 Reasons Tartar Is A Big Deal

29 August 2019
 Categories: Dentist, Blog

Tartar buildup may not seem like a major issue and often goes unnoticed since tartar easily blends in with your teeth. There are several reasons tartar not only affects your oral hygiene in the short-term but can lead to major problems in the future.


Tartar can compromise the aesthetics of your teeth. Some people erroneously believe they are experiencing staining and use whitening products only to find out the products are not working. When you have tartar buildup and use whitening products, areas where your teeth are not obstructed by tartar may whiten, but the tartar itself can remain a darker color. If you are trying to whiten your teeth and notice uneven whitening, especially near the gum line, you should have your teeth cleaned first to see if this makes a difference. Additionally, if you already attempted to whiten your teeth, it may be hard to achieve an even color even after cleaning. Having professional whitening might be the best way to even the color between areas that were already whitened and areas that were once covered with tartar, without causing damage to your teeth and gums.

Bad Breath

When you have tartar buildup, no amount of oral care or specialty products will reduce or eliminate bad breath. Most of the problems associated with bad breath are due to bacteria. When you consider that tartar is the byproduct of food residue and bacteria that have hardened on the teeth, it makes sense why tartar can contribute to odor. Once tartar forms, the only way to remove it is to have cleanings or, in some instances, deep cleanings. After your teeth are cleaned, you can start fresh with a routine that effectively removes plaque before it can harden into tartar. Incorporating an anti-plaque mouth rinse into your oral care routine will make the process easier since the mouth rise makes it easier to effectively remove plaque during brushing and flossing.

Ineffective Oral Care

Tartar buildup can make your oral care routine ineffective and unnecessarily difficult. One of the major problems you might notice is difficulty flossing. When tartar accumulates between your teeth, this means the space between each tooth becomes narrower. No matter how thin the floss is, it can be impossible to floss between your teeth and force the floss down far enough below the gum line for it to make much of a difference. As the problem continues, there may be no space between your teeth and flossing is no longer an option. Similar problems arise with brushing. Most tartar collects at the gum line because you may not be brushing thoroughly. Once this occurs, you are really just brushing the buildup, not the actual tooth.

Gum Disease

The most detrimental result of tartar is the development of gum disease. In the early stages, gum disease may not be noticeable, but eventually, you might see redness at the gum line or your gums might bleed when you brush or floss. In most instances, bleeding gums is a sign your gums are inflamed. When the symptoms are relatively minor, it is easy to fix the problem and reverse gum disease with deep cleaning and improving your oral care.

As the problem progresses, the signs become more obvious. Your gums will start to recede as healthy gum tissue is lost. There can be a loss of underlying bone and connective tissue causing your teeth to become loose and they may eventually fall out. The process of rehabilitating your teeth and gums can be lengthy once the problem progresses. Lost teeth can only be replaced with implants or dentures. Before any restorative dentistry can be done, you may need to spend months having periodontal treatments before your gums are healthy enough to support restoration procedures.

Tartar can easily blend in with your teeth and the problems it causes may not be noticeable at first. As tartar buildup escalates, you can experience dramatic effects on your teeth and gums that are not remedied simply with changes in your oral care. Contact a clinic like RTC Dental for more information.