Thatch is an organic matter that is found between the soil and lawn surface. This organic matter usually decomposes by the effects of air, water, and beneficial soil microbes.
Cases where thatch decomposition slows down such as:
Soil microbes are not active
Lack of soil air
Mowing is very high and infrequent
Soil is acid
Dethatch if your lawn thatch is more than 12 mm thick because thick thatch:
Reduces water infiltration into the soil
Dries out root mass and turns the lawn yellow in the summer
Increases lawn diseases
Decreases lawn tolerance to cold and heat
Reduces soil air
Reduces lawn nutrition
Dethatching substantially improves lawn growth in the sense that your lawn becomes more beautiful, requires less water, becomes dense in a healthy environment with less weed invasion.