About 75 percent of us will still have some of our natural teeth by the time we pass age 65. That said, our risk of oral health issues increases as we age. Our dentists at Hanin Dental Surrey share advice on how to keep your teeth healthy as you enter your senior years.
One fact of getting older is that our risks of facing oral health-related diseases and disorders increase. From cavities, gum disease and mouth infections to tooth loss and oral cancer, we need to be vigilant against these serious conditions.
However, it's not inevitable that you will experience poor health as you age past your late 60s and beyond. If you book regular dental appointments, maintain a consistent at-home oral hygiene routine between visits and eat a healthful diet, your chances of having healthy teeth in the coming years drastically improve.
Try these great tips for keeping your smile looking and feeling healthy as you enter your golden years.
Minimize Wear & Tear
By this period of your life, your teeth have endured decades of everyday crunching, chewing and gnawing. Depending on how much carbonated or acidic food and beverages you've dined on during those years, your teeth may have experienced significant wear and tear.
This leaves them more vulnerable to oral bacteria, plaque, decay, chips, fractures and cavities, all of which may compromise the structural integrity of one or many teeth.
Since disease and decay are caused by bacteria, we need to prevent bacteria from gaining a foothold. Make sure to brush and floss regularly and book appointments with your dentist for professional cleanings.
You might also consider toothpastes and mouthwashes that contain fluoride and other ingredients that strengthen tooth enamel. Finally, avoid using your teeth to chew on pen lids, trim your fingernails or rip packages.
Keep your teeth in great condition by maintaining excellent oral health, allow your dentist the chance to detect any oral health issues or conditions such as oral cancer early and reduce impact or wear and tear, so issues can be effectively treated.
Pay Attention to Your Gums
Healthy gums are a great foundation for healthy teeth, so it's essential to prevent gum (periodontal) disease by brushing and flossing plaque away before it can collect along the gumline. If advanced disease is diagnosed, oral surgery will likely be required to treat the condition.
Gum disease is the main cause of tooth loss in mature adults. Symptoms of this condition include loose teeth, receding gums and even a deteriorating jawbone.
While gum disease isn't a natural side effect of aging, serious symptoms can develop later in our lives or become more visible in our golden years. Fortunately, we can prevent perdiodontal disease and tooth decay. Whatever your age, remember to brush for two minutes twice each day, floss and visit your dentist regularly for an oral hygiene exam and professional dental cleaning.
Gently brushing and flossing your gums will keep them pink and healthy. Since your gums may be sensitive, avoid vigorous brushing as this may harm them.