As the birthday candles start piling up on your cake, dental problems do too, and they are nothing to smile about. After 65, as your physical health starts to decline, your dental health starts to lose its grip too. Your teeth are strong but decades of chewing, biting, grinding, consuming tons of acidic food and sugary, carbonated drinks take a toll on your teeth, enamel, nerves and gums, leaving them vulnerable to decay and more serious dental problems. If any infection affects inflamed gums or a cracked tooth, it could worsen into a root canal and permanently damage teeth.
There are ways to reduce the dental discomfort. It starts with regular visits to your dental specialists, even when you feel your teeth are healthy. If arthritis or other ailments inhibit your movements, and you find it hard to brush and floss your teeth with proper care, fluoride rinses and enamel protection gels can help you hold on to healthier teeth for longer.
- As you age, your gum line recedes, making your teeth more susceptible to cavities since your teeth are more exposed to bacteria.
- Medications dry out your salivary glands so your mouth feels dry.
- The risk of lip or oral cancer increases with tobacco use.
- The teeth yellows with age and the thin film of enamel wear down.
- Weak teeth may start to feel wobbly and fall out.
- Exposed, unprotected gums can invite periodontal disease.
- Plaque build-up can harden and infect the soft gum tissue.
- Bad habits such as smoking tobacco or sugary beverages can catch up with you, leading to painful diseases like oral cavity cancer, ulcers, herpes, yeast infections and more.
- Falling, weak teeth may result in dentures if your dentist advises them.
- Dry mouth (lack of enough saliva production) can lead to discomfort, difficulty in eating and swallowing, bad breath, infections and irritation.
- As food choices become limited, teeth become weaker and are prone to fractures.
- Missing teeth change the shape of your face or speech problems.
- If plaque build-up is not scaled off, bacterial diseases can cause soreness, bleeding gums, swelling and other painful conditions that can damage the underlying bones.
Good Practices for Dental Health in Seniors
A few good oral hygiene practices can help you slow down or alleviate dental diseases. Avoid tobacco, alcohol, and caffeinated beverages. Make it a habit to floss every time after brushing your teeth. If uncontrolled sugar leaves you with diabetes, you are more prone to gum infection. Drink plenty of water to keep your mouth hydrated after medications. Sugarless candy or sugarless gum also encourages saliva production.
Forest Hill Dental, Kitchener
We have been recognized as one of the top dentistry practices in Kitchener. We are committed to providing a variety of high-quality dental services to ensure you leave with a smile after every visit. Our friendly, knowledgeable team of dentistry experts treat your whole family in an office that’s designed to provide you with modern comforts, warmth and caring service. We are here for you before, during and after your appointment! Call us to book a time that works for you.