Life expectancy in America has hit record highs in recent years due to advances in medical technology. It’s therefore no surprise that we’re keeping our natural teeth longer, too. But it’s not a perfect picture: some older adults find it challenging to keep up with a daily oral health routine. They often require more complex dental treatments over time, and are more susceptible to certain diseases. Problems in the mouth may also cause difficulty in basic functions such as chewing and swallowing, or induce a lack of confidence due to a change in one’s appearance or the sound of one’s voice. What special dental problems do older people face? And what can be done to combat these problems?
Here are just a few special dental concerns of adults as they age:
In addition to the problems mentioned above, medications prescribed for other diseases can adversely affect a person’s oral health in a variety of ways. This often leads other conditions (such as diabetes) to worsen, and may even cause whole-body inflammation.
Contrary to popular belief, dental problems and tooth loss are not inevitable. In fact, with proper and consistent oral hygiene, your teeth can last a lifetime! What’s involved? A good oral health routine includes the following steps:
Arthritis and other conditions make routine brushing and flossing challenging. Your dentist can recommend special brushes and floss holders to make daily cleaning easier. Therapeutic mouthrinses or special in-office treatments, such as additional cleanings or root scaling and planing, aid in controlling gum disease. In addition, a thorough screening for oral cancer is included in your routine dental examination. Early detection provides the best chances at combating the disease effectively. If you suffer from chronic dry mouth, a change in medication or using a product designed to combat this problem may provide relief.
Our dentists at the Yuba City Dental Group are committed to making your oral health a priority. Call us for an appointment today at 530-671-4784, or make an appointment with our online scheduler, and we’ll work together to ensure your teeth last for years to come.