Preventive Care

Preventive dental care is important throughout your life, no matter your age. As your dentist near Gurnee, it’s important to let you know that by practicing good oral hygiene at home and scheduling regular checkups with your dentist, you can help keep your smile bright and healthy for many years to come.

How Can You Prevent Plaque Build-Up?

Plaque build-up happens when saliva, food, and fluids combine and eventually produce bacteria deposits. The deposits collect where the teeth and gums meet, ultimately producing acids that attack your tooth enamel and can damage your gums. Plaque can also develop on your tooth roots under the gums, which causes a breakdown of the bone that should be supporting the tooth. Here are a few simple ways that you can prevent the build-up of plaque and cavities:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush. Use fluoride toothpaste to remove food particles and plaque from the tooth surfaces. Also, be sure to brush the top surface of your tongue; this will remove any extra plaque-causing food particles, and help keep your breath fresh!
  • Clean between your teeth by flossing at least once a day. You can also use a mouthwash to help kill bacteria and freshen your breath. Decay-causing bacteria can linger between teeth where toothbrush bristles can't reach. Floss and mouthwash will help remove plaque and food particles from between the teeth and under the gum line that brushing was not able to reach.
  • Eat a balanced diet, and try to avoid extra-sugary treats. Nutritious foods such as raw vegetables, plain yogurt, cheese, or fruit can help keep your smile healthy.
  • Remember to schedule regular checkups with your dentist every six months for your professional teeth cleaning and exam.
  • Ask your dentist about dental sealants, which are protective plastic coatings that can be applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth where decay often starts.
  • If you play sports, be sure to ask your dentist about special mouthguards designed to protect your smile while you stay active.

When To Visit Your Dentist

You need to stay on top of your oral health to prevent plaque build-up on your teeth—it’s also the best way to prevent tartar from forming. If it's been six months since your last dental checkup, then it's time to contact our practice and schedule your next appointment! Continue reading to discover more tips and tricks on how to brush and floss your teeth correctly from our dentist serving Gurnee.