Good dental hygiene and oral care habits are important for any age. However, taking care of oral hygiene especially becomes crucial in the senior years when people start to face certain unique dental challenges. Dr. Kami Hoss mentions that elderly individuals commonly face the problems of darkened teeth, dry mouth, attrition, gum recession and tooth loss. Certain elements associated with of, such as more regular medications or a chronic condition can increase the risk for dry mouth, along with cavities or decay.
As the age of a person increases, a growing number of problems they have to face in regards to maintaining their health. This simply is a natural consequence of aging. Kami Hoss mentions that for several seniors one of the major areas of concern is their oral health. Even though enamel, which basically is the hard coating surrounding the teeth, ranks among the hardest substance in the body, a lifetime of wear can take a tool even something as resilient as it and cause dental problems.
Among many other issues, gum recession is one of the major dental issues faced by elderly individuals. In this condition, gum tissue surrounding the teeth gets damaged. This causes the gum line to slowly pull back, which exposes more of the tooth and its roots. Such a condition can ultimately lead to gum disease and tooth decay. It may even result in the bone structures and supporting tissue of the teeth to become severely damaged, which causes tooth loss.
Here are a few dental care tips underlined by Dr. Kami Hoss that can help senior citizens to avoid problems like tooth recession and more:
- Maintain regular dental visits: Even if a person wears dentures, they should get their gums and teeth checked once in a while to stay a step ahead from potential dental issues.
- Brush and floss daily: People of all ages, including senior citizens should twice a day for at least for two minutes. For best results, they must use toothpaste that contains fluoride.
- Use an antibacterial mouthwash: An antibacterial mouthwash can reduce the buildup of plaque, and should ideally be used after brushing and flossing.
- Increase fluoridation: Most people believe that fluoride is for children, but so is not the case. Older individuals tend to have an increased risk for cavities, and hence they must try to incorporate fluoride into their daily dental care routine.
- Avoid tobacco: Tobacco is harmful to the health in general, more so for the oral health. It can increase the risk of mouth and throat cancer. Chewing tobacco can accelerate the rate of tooth decay as well, as several tobacco formulations contain sugar.
- Increase oral hydration: One can ask their doctor if they can substitute their medication for one that does not cause dry mouth. If this is not possible, then one must drink as much water as possible and stay hydrated.
These simple tips can be helpful for people to ensure their good dental health even at old age.