Do no ignore dental care for seniors!
Age is not the sole factor taken into consideration when considering a declining oral health, but usually the higher the age, the more oral health problems. With increasing age seniors are put at a higher risk for problems: darkened teeth, root decay, gum disease, tooth loss, denture-induced issues and more.
Along with tooth enamel being weakened/eroded away, teeth chipping and cracking more easily, long years of foods staining the teeth, and receding gums, seniors are also more prone to things such as arthritis, which may discourage them from brushing their teeth multiple times a day.
So, what can be done? Here are a few suggestions:
1. Don’t change the good habits you have. Keep brushing your teeth at least twice a day, floss often (once a day is recommended!), and visit your dentist every 6 months. The older you get, the more important these things become.
2. Avoid sugary foods (these can cause your teeth to rot), avoid chewing on ice and other hard substances, and avoid foods that can stain your teeth (such as coffee, tea, and tobacco).
3. Keep your gums healthy by eating a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids act as inflammation suppressants and can be found most commonly in fish, fish oils, and flax seed.
4. If dry mouth is a problem, check your medications. Some medications can cause a dry mouth. An easy fix may be sugar-free gum; chewing gum can increase your flow of saliva.
Bottom line… take care of your teeth, no matter how old you are! (Just pay more attention and be aware of the problems that can arise the older you get!)