Seniors and Oral Health

added on: March 5, 2015

Seniors and Oral HealthA common misconception is that as we age, we must lose our natural teeth. That’s not necessarily always true. With a lifetime of proper oral hygiene and regular dental visits to our Charlotte dental office, it’s possible to keep your teeth for your whole life. However dental care for seniors becomes particularly important.

Gum Disease

People of all ages are at risk for developing gum disease; however, by age 65, 1 in every 4 will have this dangerous disease. While it is treatable, it’s important to catch it early before it has a chance to affect the rest of the body. This makes regular visits to your dentist in Charlotte extremely important, especially for our senior citizens.

Gum disease may lead to some scary and unpleasant whole-body health problems and even more issues in the mouth. According to the American Academy of Periodontology, 20-30 percent of adults have gum disease severe enough to lose their teeth. And that’s not all. Gum disease has been linked to heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. To help keep your gums safe, avoid the following:

  • Smoking
  • Poor diet
  • Inadequate oral hygiene

Dry Mouth

As we age, the number of medications we take tends to increase. While this change is good for helping ease any problems you may have, it can be detrimental to your oral health. Many medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, may cause dry mouth. Dry mouth is an uncomfortable and dangerous problem as it greatly increases the chance of decay, gum disease, and other oral infections.

Whole Body

Your mouth is directly linked with the rest of your body. If you want to keep your body in tip-top shape, you need to take care of your mouth. Additionally, it’s incredibly important to let your dentist in Charlotte know of any health conditions you may have, including, but not limited to, diabetes, cancer, and heart disease, as these can all affect your oral health and will dictate the path of treatment most appropriate to you.

We always encourage you to maintain proper oral hygiene and keep up with regular dental appointments for optimal overall health, especially as you age. Seniors are important individuals to all of us here at our dental office in Charlotte, and we love to care for some of the most special smiles.

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