A white film on the teeth is relatively common, but do you know what it is?
Most of us have probably woken up from time to time with a feeling of something white and sticky on our teeth and gums. Most commonly, this might occur after consuming alcohol the previous night, and many of us may simply put it down to that.
This sticky white film should be understood better though, as, although occasional instances may not be too damaging, if this persists, you may be looking at dental health issues further down the track.
What the sticky film actually consists of if both live and dead bacteria – plaque. Our mouths are full of these and around seventy different types live in our mouths. Some of these bacteria are good and help to break down our food, whilst others are not so good and may lead to problems like gum disease if not controlled. On a daily basis, with good brushing, flossing and suitable hydration, the number of bacteria should be easily managed and no problems occur. When we neglect these though, the bacteria can become out of control and cause serious damage to our teeth and gums, and, according to some medical research, may even contribute to heart problems amongst other medical conditions.
Avoiding excess ‘bad’ bacteria
Like the rest of our body, our mouths need to be kept clean. The bad bacteria especially, that contribute to oral health problems, can be fairly easily controlled and managed with just a little effort on the patient’s behalf.
Hydration – Make sure that you drink plenty of water. This is especially the case if you have been drinking alcohol the night before. Drinking water before you go to bed will help to prevent the sticky feeling in your mouth the morning after by denying the bacteria their ideal breeding ground of a warm but dry mouth.
Brush – Brush your teeth, especially before bedtime, however tired you are. This is a simple and rudimentary way to look after your teeth and something that everyone should do.
Floss – You possibly don’t do it? Only around one in five of us do but really you should! Adding flossing to your routine though will help to remove bacteria, along with food debris, from between your teeth, an area where many dental problems originate.
Visit us – Patients who look after their teeth and visit Confidental Clinic Greenwich every six months or so, are likely to have healthier teeth than those who don’t. Don’t skip appointments and if you do have to miss one, please let us know and we will find an alternative date for you. We also recommend that you see our dental hygienist for further guidance on gum health and for a professional clean which will remove any hardened bacteria from your teeth and gums.
Following this simple advice means that you may never have to experience that unpleasant morning feeling of sticky plaque in your mouth. To arrange an appointment with the hygienist or dentist at our Greenwich practice please call the Confidental Clinic on 020 8858 1422.