What is dental plaque and tartar? These terms are often used synonymously as the build-up of material on teeth between brushing. Plaque and tartar are actually two different things.
Dental plaque is a slimy film that forms on the teeth, and it is caused by bacteria.
Dental tartar, or dental calculus as it is known by dental professionals, is a hard matrix of fossilized bacteria that forms on teeth above and below the gum line.
Plaque is removed and controlled by brushing and flossing.
Removing tartar on the teeth is usually performed by scraping or using an ultrasonic device by a dental hygienist.
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