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Everything You Need to Know About Oral Healthcare for Seniors

February 9, 2022 / DENTISTRY

Health and wellness should be a priority at any age, and your oral health is a big part of your overall well-being. Healthy teeth are instrumental to all the eating, drinking, speaking, and smiling that you plan to do during your senior years, and caring for your mouth, teeth and gums is the best way to ensure that you can do all of these things for many years to come.

This type of routine can help prevent the most common oral healthcare problems that seniors experience as they age.

These problems include:

Tooth decay – this occurs when plaque bacteria spread and grow, creating acids that attack and eventually erode the enamel that protects your teeth from decay. Regular dental visits are key to making sure that early signs of decay are identified and treated, because if they’re not, that decay can continue and eventually cause cavities, or create problems that require dental procedures like crowns, root canals, or even dental extractions.

Gum disease – this occurs when the plaque and tarter on your teeth are left to build-up, causing redness, swelling, or even bleeding in your gums. This is another problem that, if caught by a dental professional early on, can be easily treated, reducing the likelihood that you’ll experience problems like teeth pulling away from the gums, or degradation of your bones, gums and tissues that support the root structure of your teeth. Severe gum disease can also lead to the need for tooth extractions.

Here's what you can do to care for your teeth as you age:

  • Brush twice a day, every day. This removes the food particles and other debris from your teeth, reducing the amount of plaque and bacteria that can build up and cause decay.
  • Floss every day. Flossing cleans those hard-to-reach places between your teeth that are easy to miss by brushing alone. These areas are prone to cavities because they are so often missed by the toothbrush.
  • Eat a nutritious diet. Avoid sugary foods and drinks and be sure to eat a lot of fresh vegetables and low-acid fruits. Stay away from candy and pop, and if you do indulge from time to time, be sure to brush or at least rinse afterwards, to remove as much sugar as possible.
  • Drink plenty of water. Many people experience dry mouth as they age, and dry mouth can increase the risk of infections and tooth decay. Drinking water flushes out a lot of the sugar that would otherwise be left on your teeth, plus it takes the place of sugary, acidic drinks like pop and juice.

If you’re due for a dental checkup, call the team at Caledon Dental Centre to schedule an appointment today. We’ll schedule an appointment to assess your current condition, and discuss the best course of care for your teeth moving forward.