Regular brushing and floss are the most important components of oral hygiene, and anyone who doesn’t, faces plaque buildup on their teeth. It is an accumulation of bacteria and food particles on the teeth. If the issue is not handled, it hardens to form calcified tartar. It is one of the few things that makes the smile very displeasing. Tartar starts as a yellow appearance on teeth but soon changes into black; read on to know the reasons for black tartar buildup on teeth and ways to fix it.
Sometimes even with good care, bacteria can still form tartar on your teeth. Take a few minutes out and examine your mouth, especially your teeth. Screening greatly helps in the early detection of oral issues.

Black Tartar on Teeth – Causes

Tartar is initially yellow but turns black due to certain external and internal factors. Black tartar grows gradually on teeth; they start off as small brown dots or lines and then turn black.

External Factors

  • Consuming beverages with staining quality like black tea, black coffee, red wine, soda, etc., affects the color.
  • Mostly smoking tobacco turns tartar black. A cigarette contains tar, nicotine, and carbon monoxide; together, they take a toll on tartar and turn it black on the gum line.
  • Ingestion of dental fillings or crown.

Internal Factors

  • Enamel damage changes the way your teeth look, transforms them from white to black.
  • When tartar grows on the gum line of the teeth, it’s mostly black and known as subgingival tartar. It happens because of the interaction between blood from sensitive gums and the tartar.

How to Get Rid of Black Tartar on Teeth?

You can’t remove tartar of any kind without dental assistance. Getting deep professional cleaning always helps. The dentist will first make a proper diagnosis and get to the root cause of the issue for appropriate treatment.
Scaling and Root planing is the procedure performed for tartar removal. It is a procedure that takes two settings to complete. Don’t worry; it is a painless process. However, you can always request the dentist for a local anesthetic.


The dentist will scrape tartar from the tooth using a handheld scraper or a vibrating ultrasonic device. Both will first loosen the tartar and then break them. Usually, they start removal beneath the gum line, move towards the middle and base of the teeth, then the crown. The cleaning is done in every direction, vertical, horizontal, and circular.

Root Planing

Root planing achieves complete removal of subgingival bacteria. The dentist will go deeper within and reach the roots for cleaning. Planing easily removes the cementum – a film-type layer that covers the roots.

Control the Growth of Black Tartar on Teeth

  • Regularly floss and brush at least for 2 minutes using a soft-bristled toothbrush, making sure that the size of the toothbrush is enough to reach the rear side of the mouth easily.
  • Use mouthwash as a rinse daily to remove bad breath and leftover bacteria.
  • Use fluoride-containing toothpaste to aid in the remineralization of enamel.
  • Avoid food items high in sugar or acidic content.


Black tartar not only ruins your appearance but destroys oral health as well. Your smile is one of the first few things to get noticed, and black tartar on teeth gives a very bad impression. Therefore, it is best to perform self-examination daily and make sure to get dental cleaning twice a year. If you are searching for the most affordable dentist in Houston, head to Smile Time Dental for a quick checkup; call now at 281-245-0711 to set an appointment today.

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