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Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Plaque Disclosing Tablets

Dr. Vincent Wan


Want to know just how good or bad your brushing and flossing is?  I mean without going to the dentist in the comfort of your own home.  Well you can use plaque disclosing tablets.

Plaque is the stuff you are trying to clean away from your teeth and gums.  It is basically soft, sticky deposits of bacteria, food debris and saliva.  If you don’t brush and floss effectively, it can harden.  The hardened plaque is called calculus and only teeth cleaning at the dentist will remove it.  Plaque and calculus can cause tooth decay, gum disease and other infections.  Your job is to effectively remove all plaque before it hardens and causes these problems.

Plaque disclosing tablets can show you how well you are removing plaque.  Brush and floss as well as you normally do.  Chew a plaque disclosing tablet and allow it to mix with the saliva in your mouth.  Swish the resultant liquid all over your mouth especially all over your teeth.  Spit it out after 30 seconds.  Your whole mouth will be coloured, usually red or blue.  Where you have left plaque behind will be a darker colour.

This will tell you where you need to work on cleaning better.  The most common areas that will stain dark red or blue are in between the teeth, at the gumline and at the last teeth in the mouth.  Areas in between the teeth mean you need to work on your flossing.  Areas at the gumline mean you need to angle your brush towards the gumline better.  Areas at the back of the mouth mean you need to try and reach the back teeth more.

There are also plaque disclosing solutions, wipes and floss.  There work in a similar way to the tablets.  Just remember your mouth may be coloured red or blue for a little while after you use these products.  It may be awkward having to explain to your partner, friends or colleagues why your teeth, gums and tongue are bright red or blue.