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5 Essential Tips for Keeping Plaque at Bay and Maintaining a Healthy Smile

Maintaining good oral hygiene can be incredibly important for your overall health, and one of the most important aspects is keeping plaque buildup at bay. 

Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that attaches to teeth and gums, creating a breeding ground for cavities, gum disease, and other problems (1). 

Fortunately, with simple tips — such as brushing regularly with fluoride toothpaste and flossing daily — you can remove plaque effectively and keep your smile shining! 

Read on below to discover our top 5 essential tips for safely removing plaque from your teeth while improving your oral health.

Tip 1: Brush and floss your teeth consistently to reduce plaque buildup.

Brushing and flossing your teeth properly is essential for maintaining healthy teeth and gums (1). 

Brushing should be done with a soft-bristled toothbrush for two minutes at least twice daily in circular motions. While brushing, make sure to cover all areas of the teeth as well as the gums, cheeks and tongue. 

To clean between the teeth, use dental floss or an interdental brush such as a water pick or wooden stick. Start from one side at the back of the mouth, reaching to the other side at the back before finally reaching in front of each tooth (2). 

After brushing and flossing, consider rinsing with an antimicrobial mouthwash that can help reduce plaque buildup (tip 2).

Tip 2: Use an antimicrobial mouthwash or rinse.

Using an antimicrobial mouthwash or rinse is one of the best ways to reduce plaque buildup. 

These types of products contain active ingredients that can help kill bacteria and reduce plaque in hard-to-reach places (2). 

To use them, swish a mouthful of the rinse around your mouth for at least 30 seconds before spitting it out. Be sure not to swallow any, as it can be harmful if ingested. Try to use a rinse after each brushing or flossing session for optimal results.

Additionally, certain types of rinses also contain fluoride, which helps strengthen and protect teeth from cavities and decay (2). 

Incorporating an antimicrobial mouthwash or rinse into your oral hygiene routine can help keep your breath fresh and your smile healthy.

Tip 3: Incorporate healthy foods into your diet.

Incorporating healthy foods into your diet is an important part of maintaining good oral health. 

In particular, fruits and vegetables are great choices as they contain high amounts of vitamins A, C, and E, all of which play vital roles in the health of teeth and gums. Vitamin A helps to maintain strong teeth enamel, vitamin C prevents bleeding from swollen gums and vitamin E repairs damaged tissues (4). 

In addition, leafy greens like spinach contain calcium, which is a building block for teeth and helps prevent cavities. 

Eating a well-balanced diet with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables can help promote healthier teeth and gums over time (1).

⚠️Tip Warning: It’s important to note that some foods that may seem healthy can still have a negative impact on your dental health if not eaten in moderation. 

For example, acidic or sugary foods can lead to tooth decay if not kept in check (see tip 4). 

Try to limit your consumption of these types of items, focusing instead on healthier options like fruits and vegetables that will benefit your oral hygiene in the long run (3).

Tip 4: Avoid sugary snacks and drinks, plus starchy carbs. 

To maintain a healthy smile and reduce plaque buildup, it is important to avoid sugary snacks and drinks and starchy carbohydrates that can be broken down into sugars in the mouth (1, 3).  

Consuming too much sugar can lead to an increase of plaque on the teeth and gums, which can cause a number of issues like cavities and gum disease (2). 

Try limiting or avoiding sugary treats completely and instead indulge in healthier options like fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds.

Tip 5: Schedule regular dental check-ups.

Regular check-ups with your dentist are essential if you want to keep your mouth healthy and free of plaque. 

During a regular check-up, your dentist can identify any potential problem areas and suggest treatments for eliminating plaque before it becomes a major issue (3). 

Additionally, the dentist can recommend lifestyle changes that may be helpful in keeping your teeth and gums clean, such as reducing sugar intake or increasing your daily flossing routine (2).

At these check-ups, your dentist will also perform a professional cleaning to help remove any built-up tartar or bacteria that have collected on the teeth and gums over time. This type of cleaning is more thorough than what you can do at home and helps ensure that you’re doing all you can to maintain optimal oral health (1).  

Make sure to schedule regular dental check-ups so that any potential issues can be addressed right away.


In conclusion, taking care of your teeth and gums is essential for maintaining a healthy smile and reducing plaque build-up. 

Following a few simple tips can go a long way toward improving your oral hygiene. 

Brushing and flossing regularly with fluoride toothpaste, using an antimicrobial rinse after meals, incorporating healthy foods into your diet, avoiding sugary snacks and drinks, and starchy carbohydrates easily broken down into sugars in the mouth, are all great ways to keep plaque at bay. 

Additionally, scheduling regular dental check-ups is an important part of keeping your mouth clean and healthy; during these check-ups, your dentist can identify any potential problem areas and suggest treatments for eliminating plaque before it becomes a major issue. 

By following these steps, you'll be sure to have a beautiful smile!

Get the Expert Care You Need With Greentree Dental Group

If you are looking for a reliable and experienced dental team to help keep your teeth and gums healthy, contact Greentree Dental Group today. 

With our expert knowledge, we can provide all the care needed to maintain a healthy smile and reduce plaque build-up. 

Schedule an appointment now and start on the path toward achieving optimal oral health!


1. Cleveland Clinic: Dental Plaque

2. Teeth Talk Girl: What is Dental Plaque and How to Remove It

3. Caputo Dental: How to Prevent Plaque and Tartar Buildup on your Bottom Front Teeth

4. Delta Dental: 7 Vitamins and Minerals Your Mouth Needs

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