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5 Tips for Preventing Gum Disease

5 Tips for Preventing Gum Disease

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5 Tips for Preventing Gum Disease Dentist Holland MI

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 47.2% of Americans age 30 and older have gum disease. While gingivitis only affects the gums, periodontal disease can affect your gums and the bones that support your teeth. Thankfully, preventing gum disease can be easy when you schedule checkups with our Holland dentist and practice good oral hygiene.

Here’s how to get started.

1. Practice Good Oral Hygiene

Gum disease is caused by untreated dental plaque buildup on your teeth and gums. While you’ll still need a teeth cleaning to get rid of tartar (hardened plaque), brushing your teeth at home will remove most plaque. Make sure you also floss once daily to remove plaque hiding between teeth and along the gum line. Periodontal disease is caused by untreated plaque buildup, so make sure you practice good oral hygiene every day.

2. Get More Vitamin C

Vitamin C deficiency has been found to be one of the leading causes of gum disease. Eating more oranges, strawberries, kiwis, or even Vitamin C supplements can help boost your resistance against gum disease. Vitamin C has healing properties that can stop gums from bleeding and swelling—common gum disease symptoms.

3. Eat a Balanced Diet

Not only is a balanced diet good for your smile, but it can help improve overall health. Be sure to stay away from sugary foods and drinks that can lead to tooth decay and gum disease. A balanced diet filled with vitamins and minerals will boost your immunity and help prevent periodontal disease.

Before putting something in your grocery cart, be sure to check the nutritional information on the package. Many of the foods and drinks we believe to be healthy can contain high levels of sugar like fruit juices and sports drinks.

4. Stay Hydrated

While it may seem weird to think about, saliva is one of our best natural defenses against dental plaque. After you eat a meal, your body produces more saliva to wash away plaque and food particles. To maintain a healthy smile, make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day. Also, keep in mind that certain drinks (like coffee and alcohol) can dehydrate you.

5. Schedule Teeth Cleanings

During a professional teeth cleaning, a dental hygienist will be able to remove plaque from teeth. Later on, our dentist will be able to check for the signs of gum disease so you can maintain a healthy smile.

While gingivitis is reversible, periodontitis is not. However, if our dentist discovers advanced gum disease, they will be able to do scaling and root planing to help prevent receding gums and other oral health issues. Since patients with periodontitis have deep gum pockets around teeth, our dentist will recommend gum disease treatment.

Bonus Tip: Know Your Risk

One of the best ways to prevent gum disease is to know your risk and talk to our dentist. We’ll be able to spot the warning signs that gum disease could be on the horizon, such as smoking and advanced age.

It’s important to understand that periodontal disease isn’t inevitable if you have risk factors. You can lower your risk significantly by following the advice in this blog post and scheduling regular appointments with our office.

Request an Appointment With Us

Dr. Brenton Habecker at Macatawa Smiles is dedicated to helping patients maintain healthy smiles by offering teeth cleanings and other preventive dental services. To schedule an appointment with our Holland dentist, call (616) 396-7524.

This blog post has been updated.


Dear Patient Family,

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a difficult time for all of us. Many of you have been forced to wait for dental care and we appreciate your understanding while we kept our office closed to follow orders from the Governor's Office.

We are happy to say that we are opening our office for all patient treatment on June 1st, 2020. Our hours of operation will go back to normal, Monday-Thursday 8am - 5pm. We want you to know that there will be some changes at your next appointment. Please be patient with us as our protocols will inevitably change as new guidelines are released.

  • We ask that you use our parking lot as the waiting room.
  • Please wear a mask when you come into the office and leave it on until entering the treatment room. Homemade is acceptable.
  • Only the person receiving treatment should come in the building, all others will be asked to wait in the car if at all possible. The exception will be for our minor patients who may have one parent accompany them.
  • We will be asking you some questions when you arrive at the office and we will also be taking your temperature.
  • We will not be able to offer magazines, drinks, or toys at this time as they cannot be disinfected to our standards. Eventually this will change and we will be happy to offer our amenities once again.

These changes have been made to adhere to the latest CDC guidelines and for the benefit of our patients and our staff. We want you to know that our office has always taken the safety of our patients very seriously and that we will continue to follow the highest levels of sterilization and disinfection to keep you protected. If you would like more information on what measures we have taken we would be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

We cannot say how excited we are to see all of our patients again and to provide for their dental needs. We look forward to seeing all of your smiling faces soon!

Dr. Habecker and Team