I have this yellow stuff that keeps covering my teeth. I can kind of get some of it off, but wondered what it is. It keeps getting worse. Can I do anything about it?
Wanda G.- Florida
The yellow build up is called calculus or tartar. It builds up on our teeth because our saliva has minerals in it. The minerals build up in the form of calculus. When we can see the build up, as in your case, it is then called tartar. It is easily treated by getting your teeth professionally cleaned every six months. If left untreated, it is very bad for your teeth. It will lead to gum disease that will eventually cause your gums to pull away from your teeth, which in turn will cause your teeth to get loose and fall out.
It sounds to me, though I realize this is just an assumption, that you haven’t had your teeth professionally cleaned in a while. There are many reasons that people do that. Sometimes it is financial, and sometimes it is because of fear that the visit will be painful. If the former, you can call around for a dentist that is willing to let you pay out your visit over time. Or, you may see if there is a dental school in your area. If so, they generally do cleanings for a very small fee. If your case is the latter, that is easily solved by going to a sedation dentist. With sedation dentistry, you will feel no pain at all during your visit.
This blog is brought to you by Lafayette Dentist Dr. John Theriot.