Oral Care for Seniors
Oral health is of utmost importance, especially with growing age. We are blessed with only one set of teeth and its vital for us to take care of them. Our teeth age as well and need extra care as we cross an age of 60.
Most seniors are left with only a portion of their original teeth (According to the Washington Dental Service Foundation). Issues of gum diseases increase with age as well and result in loss of natural teeth. Taking care of your teeth and regular dentist visits become a must as age increase.
Here are few tips on keeping your teeth healthy, especially for seniors:
1. Brush twice each day for at least two minutes, and use toothpaste that contains fluoride.
2. Ensure that you visit your dentist regularly. Even if you are a denture wearer, do visit your dentist regularly.
3. Monitor your sugar intake. Avoid sugary colas and foods with high starch content. Brush shortly after such intake.
4. Avoid tobacco usage. Tobacco in any form is proven to cause mouth and throat cancer. Avoid tobacco in all forms.
5. Use an anti bacterial mouthwash. It helps reduce plaque in teeth.
6. If you are taking medications which cause dry mouth, consult your doctor if you can change them. If not, drink plenty of water.
7. If you are suffering from alzheimer’s disease, ensure that your care taker is instructed to remind you to brush your teeth regularly.
8. Osteoporosis is very common with age. It causes bones to become porous and more likely to fracture. When bone density in the mouth decreases, teeth can become loose. Women are at a higher risk of osteoporosis than men. Anti-resorptive medications are used by many to prevent or treat this condition. However, some of this medications cause a rare but serious condition called osteonecrosis of the jaw that can cause damage to the jawbone. Discuss with your doctor before taking any medications on its implications on your oral health.
9. With increase in age, gum disease, tooth and root decay, sensitive teeth, diabetes and dry mouth are just some of the conditions that are noticed. Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease. It can be recognized by swollen, red or bleeding gums. A trip to your dentist can help resolve the issue.
10. Tooth and root decay is also seen very frequently with increase in age. Buildup of plaque and food debris should be avoided by proper brushing, cleaning and flossing. In case pain or decay is noticed, do not wait to see a dentist.
11. Dry mouth is another main cause of tooth and root decay. Dry mouth is caused by reduction in saliva production, mostly due to medications. Drink plenty of water to avoid such conditions.
The tips and suggestions are more common sensible practices but are of high importance. Seeing your dentist regularly is a must because only he or she can provide tips and recommendations to your unique set of teeth. If you are looking for a seniors dentist in Maroubra, give us a call today.