Perhaps you are getting older and concerned about your oral health. The fact is, there are millions of older adults who have not been to the dentist in a few years or ever received teeth cleaning and other dental hygiene services. However, as we age it is important to make regular visits to the dentist to help maintain good oral (and overall) health in the years to come. Here are some common problems that sometimes worsen as we get older:
Many of us still have many or all of our natural teeth as we get into our 60s, 70s, and 80s. Just like when we were younger, cavities can form when we neglect to brush and floss regularly, and forget to schedule twice-yearly cleanings with a hygienist. As we get older, our teeth are more fragile, sensitive, softer, and prone to decay.
Gum disease is not a foregone conclusion for older patients. However, gum disease does lead to tooth loss. To avoid (or help remedy) gingivitis, practice good oral hygiene. Periodontitis prevention also requires regular brushing, flossing, and rinsing — as well as visits to the dentist.
As we age, our bodies produce less saliva in the mouth. Saliva protects teeth against decay and gum disease. Remember to sip water throughout the day and chew sugarless gum to help assist with saliva production. Talk about dry mouth problems with your dentist.
Oral Cancer Risk
Health statistics show the risk for oral cancer increases as we age. This is sometimes the case for those of us who smoke and drink alcohol. Regardless, a dental health screening will help determine if you have symptoms or warning signs that need immediate treatment and attention.
For all your dental needs, please call Dr. Urszula Barrios — your Guelph Dentist who can tend to all your oral health concerns: (519) 767-6453.