Food & Drinks to Avoid for Better Teeth

There are countless food and beverages that poorly affect our oral health which tempt us daily. Use our list to better acquaint yourself with such foods and beverages to improve your oral health moving forward toward the new year!


Regardless of the contents of a soda beverage, whether it’s diet or regular, soda has been proved to be a threat to your enamel. Not only do these drinks contain a considerable amount of sugar, most of them contain a specific acid that has been proven to damage tooth enamel. It is best to skip these beverages entirely to avoid potentially harmful ingredients.


Both red and white wine present their respect issues to your teeth. Red wines often discolor teeth and though sometimes this is taken care of with a thorough brushing, it can lead to staining if you have naturally soft enamel.


Not only do candies contain high amounts of sugar that damage your teeth, but also sticky and chewy candies can get stuck between your teeth and braces and even damage fillings. If you’re looking for a sugar-fix but have sensitive teeth, dark chocolate is a great option and is easy on your teeth.

Potato Chips

Though they seem unthreatening, potato chips can be harmful to your oral health. Potato chips tend to leave behind particles which turn into plaque that can both build up on your teeth and get stuck in unsuspecting places and prove an even greater threat. 

Citrus Fruits

Grapefruits, oranges, lemons, and limes contain strong acids that can damage your teeth, particularly your enamel. Try to choose less acidic fruits to get your daily fixing if your teeth are sensitive.

All Star Dental with locations in Aurora, Blue Island, Chicago (Austin), Chicago (United Center), and Joliet IL offer a range of dental services to our patients. Contact the office closest to you today to schedule an appointment!

What is Teeth Grinding & How Does It Affect Me?

Teeth grinding is very common among both children and adults and can have lasting damage to your teeth. By learning more about what teeth grinding is, you can start preventing its effects today. Follow along for everything you need to know about teeth grinding and see if this could be an issue for you.

What is Teeth Grinding?

Teeth grinding is when one clenches their jaw, putting pressure on the teeth by rubbing against each other. Many people do this unconsciously while stressed or most commonly in their sleep. For those with sensitive teeth in particular, this can leave lasting damage to the teeth.

How Do I Know If I Grind My Teeth?

If you awake in the morning with a sore jaw or sensitive teeth, you could be grinding during the night. Often times, people will not even notice if they are grinding their teeth while awake but they will likely suffer from the same side effects. If you think you may be grinding your teeth, it is best to ask your dentist’s opinion.

What Can I Do About It?

Teeth grinding isn’t a habit you can necessarily fix by simply making a conscious effort to do so but there are ways to prevent damaging your teeth. In order to best address your teeth grinding, you should try to find out why it is happening. For many people, stress causes teeth grinding and therefore they should address the stress factor. Exercise, therapy and making more time for enjoyable activities are all great ways to reduce your stress level. If you grind your teeth in your sleep, you should get a night guard to protect your teeth from the negative effects of teeth grinding. Consult your dentist today to address your teeth grinding problem immediately.

How to Choose the Right Toothpaste for Your Teeth

Selecting the right toothpaste for you can be a tough process if you don’t know what you’re looking for. Use our guide to know what to look for when deciding between options and be sure you choose the best toothpaste for you.

ADA Approval

First things first, any toothpaste option you are considering should have an approval seal from the American Dental Association (ADA) declaring it as a healthy, effective toothpaste. If one of your options does not have the seal of approval, you should move on and look further into other options that do have it.


Try finding a toothpaste that fights against cavities forming to further protect your teeth. Cavities are the most common oral health issues in both children and adults so finding a toothpaste that could help you fight them is essential.


By purchasing a toothpaste with fluoride, you will help your teeth in several ways. Fluoride helps to strengthen your enamel, which will add an extra layer of protection to your teeth. It has been proven that fluoride is just as important as the daily oral hygiene routines you’ve been taught so consider adding this aspect to your toothpaste and make your routine more effective.


Another common issue for adults is gum sensitivity and infection. Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease and without treatment, it can become a serious health concern. Gingivitis can have a significant effect on your oral health and by preventing it, you will save thousands of dollars on treatments for both your gums and teeth.


The best way to know which toothpaste is best for your individual oral needs is to consult your dentist. At each of our All Star Dental locations, we are happily accepting new patients. Find our location nearest you today and contact us for an appointment!

How to Get the Most Out of Your Dental Insurance

For the amount of money you pay for annual dental insurance, it only makes sense to take full advantage of everything it offers you to make the most of your investment. Use our tips below to help you make the most of each monthly payment toward dental insurance to not only get the most out of it but also to improve your oral hygiene.

Get to Know Your Plan

Many people don’t end up getting the most out of their dental insurance simply because they don’t know enough about it. Take the time to get to know your plan in all of its intricacies, doing the research to find out what exactly is covered under your plan. Not only will you be able to receive more treatments, but you will also avoid any surprises down the line.

Go Over Your Explanation of Benefits

This is issued to both you and your dentist each time a claim has been paid (or if it is denied). Do not pass over this notice; be sure it read it in detail so you are aware of the process and how to react if necessary.

Stay In-Network

If you have dental insurance, you can surely find a dental professional within your network so you can take full advantage of your dental insurance. If you choose a dentist outside your network, you surely will not receive the same benefits you can from staying in-network and will end up paying much more out of pocket.

Know Your Annual Limit & Use It

Many patients are unaware of the annual limit established by their insurance provider. Being aware of your annual limit comes in especially handy when you need a multi-part procedure such as a root canal. If possible, try scheduling a root canal treatment at the end of the year and then your crown at the beginning of January. This will prevent you from going over your annual limit and save some for the following year!


Have more questions about your insurance? Contact us today for help and visit our Payment Options page to see which insurance plans we accept.

What Is Gingivitis & How Can I Prevent Gum Disease?

Gingivitis is a form of gum disease that is fairly common among both children and adults. Gingivitis occurs when plaque builds up, covers your teeth, and hardens. Bacteria found in this buildup causes damage to the gum tissue around your teeth. Though the leading cause of gingivitis is poor oral hygiene, including infrequent brushing, flossing and rinsing, there are other factors that will make you more susceptible to gingivitis. Though gingivitis can take a toll on your oral health, it is both preventable and treatable when addressed.

Gingivitis, the first stage of gum disease, is more likely to occur in individuals who smoke or use chewing tobacco, have a poor diet, substance abuse, or other situations that cause chemical imbalances in your body such as pregnancy, puberty, or autoimmune disease. Gingivitis is most dangerous when it is left untreated. Periodontists is the next state of gum disease and it is much more dangerous than gingivitis so if you have any symptoms, be sure to see your dentist immediately.

The symptoms of gingivitis are not as clear as other health issues, as most times it is painless. The most common symptoms of gingivitis include soft, swollen, red, or tender gums and, sometimes, even bad breath. The best way to prevent gingivitis is to be consistent and committed to a health oral hygiene routine. By brushing twice a day in addition to daily rinsing and flossing, you will significantly decrease your chances of gingivitis. Alongside the preventative work you will do at home, visiting your dentist at least twice a year and receiving cleaning treatments will surely fight gingivitis.

All Star Dental has five locations across Greater Chicago: Aurora, Blue Island, Chicago (Austin), Chicago (United Center), and Joliet. Contact the office closest to you for an appointment today!

How To Choose the Right Dentist for You

Choosing the right dentist for you can be difficult, as there is a lot to consider. Use our guide below and consider the following points when looking into different dental offices to ensure you’re making the best decision for you.

Location & Hours of Operation

On average, people visit the dentist 2-5 times per year between general exams and cleanings or any additional work needed such as cavity fillings or a tooth extraction. Because you’ll be traveling there semi-frequently, you should choose a location relatively close to your home. Hours of operation are also a crucial factor to consider, especially if your work hours are not easy to alter.

Payment Options

Payment options and insurance coverage are often the biggest factors for those choosing a new dentist. If you have dental insurance you will certainly want to choose an office that accepts your insurance company to limit the amount of money you pay out of pocket. If you are paying entirely out of pocket, try to choose a dentist that has payment plans that will work for you.


Use their websites to get a better feel for the environment of the dental offices you are considering. If possible, read about the dentist you are considering seeing and get to know them a little. If you have questions, call the office to get answers you cannot find on their website.

Emergency Care

Be sure to choose a dentist that offers emergency services. Tooth issues are often very painful and you will want to fix emergencies whenever they happen to arise.

All Star Dental offers professional, friendly dental services including exams and cleanings, cavity fillings, tooth extractions, and much more. Because we have locations in Aurora, Blue Island, Chicago- Austin, Chicago- United Center, and Joliet IL, we are accessible to most Greater Chicago residents. Contact the office nearest you to schedule an appointment today!

Use This Guide to Reduce Teeth Sensitivity

Having sensitive teeth can cause serious pain, discomfort, and, unfortunately, damage to your teeth. Many people experience sensitivity when eating or drinking something hot or cold as well as when they try teeth whitening products. To reduce the sensitivity and pain in your teeth, try the following methods in conjunction with a consistent oral hygiene routine and start feeling better today!

Find the Right Toothbrush & Toothpaste

The hygiene products you use have a direct result on both your oral hygiene and how your teeth feel. If you have been using the same brush and toothpaste for a while and have not seen any improvement in your sensitivity issues, talk to your dentist about different products you should try to start resolving these issues immediately.­­

Strengthen Your Enamel

If you have sensitive teeth, you may have enamel problems. Try to strengthen your enamel by scheduling fluoride treatments with your dentist and switching to fluoride-rich toothpaste.

Preventative Care

If your dental routine has been inconsistent or lacking the basic necessities, you have likely suffered with poor enamel as a result. Get back into healthy routines to strengthen your enamel; brush and floss twice a day after meals, rinsing often, avoiding sugary foods and drinks, and visiting your dentist for a cleaning and examination every six months.

Schedule Bi-Yearly Dentist Appointments

On top of being consistent with  your dental hygiene routines at home, the best way to strengthen your enamel and prevent serious problems is to visit your dentist twice a year. Because your dentist knows your mouth well, he or she can help you prevent sensitivity issues and/or find solutions if you already have sensitivity. A full examination will expose any problem areas you have and help you address them before they become more serious.

All Star Dental with offices in Aurora, Blue Island, Chicago (Austin), Chicago (United Center), and Joliet, IL provide a range of services to help our patients with sensitivity issues as well as preventative care. Contact our office nearest you today to schedule an appointment!

What is a Root Canal & How is it Done?

A root canal can sound scary but in reality, it is a standard procedure that most dentists perform regularly. Root canals are feared by many but we’re here to explain what exactly to expect with a root canal, why they’re so important and how they contribute to keeping a happy, healthy smile.

Simply put, a root canal is a treatment is meant to save a tooth that is suffering due to severe decay. Root canal procedures are necessary when this decay is deep within a tooth and cannot be treated as a more common cavity. The pulp inside your tooth becomes infected with bacteria so in order to save your tooth, the bacteria must be removed from the pulp so it can continue to live.

Most root canal procedures are performed with a four-step process highlighted below:

  • Anesthesia is administered to the tooth that will receive the root canal treatment. Typically done with a needle, this can be intimidating but patients will only feel a little pinch.
  • The procedure will begin shortly when your tooth is numb, drilling a small hole into the tooth to be able to get to the decay. The dentist will begin to clean the decay out of your tooth, removing the dead pulp to get the tooth completely clean. Most dentists also use an antimicrobial solution to kill any decay left.
  • Once the decay is removed and thoroughly cleaned, it is time to fill the hole. The material most often used is called gutta percha. After the hole is filled, a temporary filling is usually placed atop the tooth until the permanent crown is placed.
  • On a second visit, your dentist will crown your tooth to protect the tooth from future damage. This second visit typically occurs between one-two weeks after the root canal procedure.

All Star Dental with locations in Aurora, Blue Island, Chicago- AustinChicago- United Center and Joliet. Contact our office nearest you to schedule your root canal today!

How to Keep a Healthy & Happy Smile- Oral Health Tips

Wondering how you can keep your oral health in the best condition possible? Use our helpful tips to guide you on a path of excellent oral hygiene!

Brush Your Tongue

Many people forget that brushing your tongue is essential to protecting your oral health. Brushing your tongue helps fight bacteria in your mouth and will also prevent you from having bad breath.

Personalized Care

Some of the things you should be doing to keep your mouth healthy will be specific to your individual needs. For the best ways to figure out these niche needs, talk to your dentist who will have personalized tips based on your current oral health. While there are plenty of general ways that anyone can improve their oral hygiene, no one knows your needs better than your dentist so don’t hesitate to ask their opinion.


Reconsider Your Drinking Habits

Everyone has been warned of how severely sugar affects your teeth but most assume if they keep candy out of their diet they will avoid this issue but unfortunately, this is not the case. Sugar-filled drinks damage even the strongest of teeth. Avoid drinks such as soda and concentrate-based juices that contain a lot of sugar and instead, drink more water, milk or other sugar-free drinks.

Floss and Fluoride

The importance of flossing can’t be stressed enough! Taking less than a minute out of your day to floss can significantly improve your dental hygiene in a way that is unachievable any other way. Using fluoride is also extremely helpful, as it hardens your enamel which will prevent cavities. If you can’t commit to flossing and using fluoride every day, try to do each twice a week and you will see improvements in your oral health.

Looking for a New Dentist in Aurora or Joliet IL?

All Star Dental offices across Illinois are committed to helping our patients improve their oral health in every way. Visit our Dental Tips page for more ways to improve your oral hygiene and visit our Dental Services page to see all we have to offer our patients. Our Aurora, IL and Joliet, IL offices are now accepting new patients, contact us today for an appointment!