Oral Hygiene for the Elderly

Oral Hygiene for the Elderly

70 is the new 50. We are living longer and appearing more youthful and vibrant than our grandparents at the same age. Therefore it is especially important to continue sound oral health practices into our senior years. Dental care for seniors is essential to maintain or to regain one’s vitality. Now more than ever it is important to make and keep routine dental appointments to safeguard our teeth and maintain overall health.

Advancing age puts us at risk for increased oral health issues. Happily, most of these challenges can be avoided by seeing your dentist for regular exams and dental cleanings. Should problems occur, most can be quickly remedied.  Here is a list of what to watch out for, and what corresponding actions you can take to prevent these dental health issues.

  • Gum disease: This can occur at any age but is more prevalent in older persons due to habits such as smoking, poor nutrition and some medical conditions such as cancer and diabetes. Combat this with proper brushing and flossing.
  • Tooth Loss: Gum disease is more likely to cause tooth loss in seniors as the condition may have been neglected for years. Tooth loss can be avoided by seeing your dentist twice a year for routine dental cleanings and exams.
  • Root Decay: Where there is gum loss roots are exposed to foods and drinks that may be acidic and cause further erosion. Unlike a tooth’s crown, the root does not have an enamel outer layer and is more prone to decay. Cut down on erosion that can lead to root decay by rinsing your mouth with water after every meal and be sure to brush your teeth twice a day.
  • Dry Mouth: Medications are a leading cause of dry mouth which can be an unpleasant sensation. It can also lead to tooth decay. Remedy this problem by increasing saliva flow. There are over the counter products at your local drug store that will solve this problem when used regularly.
  • Stained Teeth: Over time a tooth’s enamel becomes worn and more porous. Also, as we age, there are changes to the dentin, the bone-like tissue under the enamel layer, which can darken. Add to this scenario a lifetime of drinking coffee, tea, red wine and colas and one’s teeth may darken in color. Before you use another whitening product that could damage tooth enamel, speak with your dentist to determine the best course of action for you.

Locating affordable dental care for seniors

Some dental problems occur because those living on a fixed income do not think that they can budget for continued dental health care. Fortunately, finding great dental care for seniors is easy and affordable with an EDP Dental Plan. Every member of the family can take advantage of the EDP Dental Plan and enjoy sound dental health. Or if you prefer, there are EDP Plans for singles and couples as well. Coverage begins almost immediately with no deductible to meet. Enjoy savings of up to 60% on your dental care —without the inconvenience of claims or paperwork. Call 631.458.1256 or register online today!

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