There are a few terms that you’ll often hear if you visit a dentist near you. Cavities, plaque, and gum disease are all probably words that you’ve heard in relation to your teeth, either as problems, or potential issues that you want to avoid. Then there is the less common, but no less important scientific term “biofilm,” and this has a lot of impact on just how healthy your teeth and gums are. So what is biofilm, and what can a dentist near you do about it?
It’s More Common Than You Think
Biofilm is a very natural, biological phenomenon that occurs when bacteria manages to “anchor itself” to a surface, usually with the aid of moisture. If you’ve ever been near a brook, lake or river and encountered slippery rocks due to the “slime” on top, that’s biofilm.
As you may have guessed, this combination of bacteria, a surface, and the presence of moisture also applies to the surfaces of your teeth and gums, with your own saliva providing the moisture. Under ordinary circumstances, it is practically guaranteed that a healthy mouth will accumulate a biofilm, in the form of plaque, because of all the food that you are exposing your mouth to.
This is why it’s important to make sure you stick to a good oral health regimen of daily care, like brushing and flossing your teeth. Left unattended, biofilm will naturally build up in your mouth, and it’s the combination of your daily oral hygiene and regular visits to a dentist near you that prevents this. The daily regime will help keep biofilm from building up too much, and the dental visits will ensure your teeth and gums are in good health, and treat any potential biofilm-related issues, like gum disease, from developing into something that could require serious dental attention to resolve.