Some elderly people view dental problems as a consequence of aging. But the truth is that oral health is important, whatever your age is.
If you are a senior or someone who cares for one, you need to be aware of a few alarming statistics. For one, more than 30% of older adults have cavities which are left untreated. About 25% of seniors have a periodontal disease which has been associated with a few chronic health problems including diabetes, heart disease, and respiratory problems. Finally, around 30% of the elderly lose their teeth due to different factors.
Why is senior dental health care important?
The most important reason why the elderly should pay careful attention to their dental health is because they do not need to lose their teeth while they age.
On top of that, the human mouth changes over time. And if you do not pay close attention to this and your overall dental health, you could face serious consequences related to your health.
As you age, you can become vulnerable to different dental problems brought about by different factors. For example, some medications have been known to cause dry mouth as a side effect. Low levels of saliva can make you vulnerable to bacteria and other microorganisms which can cause issues like gum disease and cavities.
Also, a person’s diet can also negatively impact one’s health. For example, if you consume too many hard and sticky treats, starchy foods, and drinks and foods that dry your mouth, you risk facing problems like difficulty in chewing your food as well as having a dull sense of taste.
Other problems associated with poor oral health in seniors include pneumonia, heart disease, and oral health.
Fortunately, seniors can improve their oral health and keep these aforementioned problems at bay through good oral hygiene.
Ideally, elderly people should continue brushing at least twice a day and flossing at least once a day.
If you are wearing dentures, remember to clean these once a day and remove from your mouth for at least four hours.
Drink lots of water as this can help keep tooth decay at bay. And if you have not stopped smoking, consider kicking this habit from your life.