The most impactful preventative action that dentists teach their patients is that regular brushing is vital to oral health, lending itself to lowering the incidence of dental cavities. It’s also important that fluoride toothpaste is used.
Floss regularly! Flossing was found to lower the incidence of a condition called gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) when combined with brushing.
Flossing is also part of the professional dental prophylaxis procedure is dental flossing (which is usually performed by the dental hygienist after scaling and before polishing).
This bi-annual flossing is certainly not a replacement for your own flossing routine, but having a professional flossing can help remove any plaque or polish leftover from your normal dental cleaning. Additionally, it will help the hygienist and dentist identify potential problem spots with your gums if they bleed. Bleeding gums can be a sign of periodontal disease.