The human mouth carries about 700 different strains of bacteria. Although most are harmless, two of them, Streptococcus mutans and Porphyromonas gingivalis, can cause health issues including gum disease and enamel erosion by producing acids that eat away at the tooth enamel, leading to holes or cavities. Brushing helps remove these bacteria and reduce their harmful effects. Plaque can also form on the teeth. This colorless, sticky film that forms consists of bacteria and sugars. Because it is sticky, it stays on the teeth until brushing removes it.
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