As people age, they encounter various health problems that include dental health issues. Elderly people have a difficult time managing their oral care routine; some choose to brush it aside since they find it a burden to perform. Other elderly people also opt to do away with dental checkups entirely since they may have a preconceived notion that having white teeth is enough.
Aging might be inevitable, but preventing oral health problems as you age can be achieved when you seek professional help. Below are some of the most common dental problems the elderly have and the proper dental care to address each of them.
Most Common Elderly Dental Problems and Treatments
- Dry Mouth
Due to their age, elderly people experience a decrease in the production of saliva, which dries their mouth. Dry mouth, medically known as xerostomia, can also be caused by certain medications prescribed to the elderly. Dry mouth can also lead the elderly to develop cavities.
To remedy dry mouth, you can turn to water therapy, which is simply drinking lots of water to properly hydrate your mouth. Dental professionals will also suggest taking care of this problem by rinsing with mouthwash; this will effectively lubricate your mouth. If you are experiencing dry mouth as a result of medications, talk to your physician about it.
- Teeth Discolouration
Teeth discolouration is caused by a variety of factors. It can be due to stain-causing food and drinks (like wine and tea), lifestyle choices (such as heavy smoking), and medications. Poor dental hygiene can also contribute to this problem. That is why you need to floss and brush daily.
Reversing teeth discolouration can be a difficult and long process, but yes, it can be done. However, not everyone is an ideal candidate for teeth whitening, especially seniors.
Porcelain-made dental restorations, including bonding, veneers, crowns, or dentures cannot be whitened because they are not naturally made. For effective teeth whitening procedures and oth
er application processes for eliminating superficial stains and brightening your enamel, seek professional a
dvice from your chosen Etobicoke dentist.
- Bad Breath
Just like other dental problems, bad breath is caused by poor dental care. Due to dry mouth, seniors will likely develop bad breath, too. Food debris buildup is just one of the many reasons why a person has a bad mouth odour.
Having fresh breath is essential to our day-to-day activities since we often have to talk to other people. You need to maintain good oral hygiene to prevent bad odours from coming out of your mouth. One of the most effective ways to prevent this dental problem is to floss and brush daily.
To get rid of bad breath, you may also need to change certain lifestyle choices. If you smoke, for example, you may need to quit. Drinking lots of water can also be an effective solution. Another thing you can do is monitor your food intake. As much as possible, eat fruits and vegetables and avoid meat. High-fibre fruits, like apples, can remove odour-causing plaque and food particles in your mouth. You should also visit your dentist regularly. This way, your dentist can diagnose problems and provide you with sound and effective dental solutions.
- Tooth Loss
Tooth loss can lead to certain inconveniences. Since you can’t chew properly without strong, healthy teeth, it can keep you from having healthy intakes of solid foods.
Approximately 1 in 5 adults aged 65 or older has experienced tooth loss. Factors that contribute to tooth loss in the elderly are improper oral hygiene, traumatic injury, or gum diseases.
Prioritizing daily flossing and brushing can help you prevent this dental problem as you age. It is also important that you seek advanced dentistry treatment to ensure that you have reliable teeth for eating the nutritious solid foods that your body requires.
- Oral Sores
The chance of having oral sores increases over time, especially for those who smoke and drink alcohol. This can lead to oral cancer if left untreated.
Seek dental advice as soon as you suspect that there is an evident change in the colour of the tissue around your teeth. To avoid oral sores, you should also avoid extremely hot food and drinks and eat a balanced diet. Lastly, use a soft toothbrush to prevent damaging your gums and the enamel of your teeth.
Aging may be unavoidable, but these dental problems can easily be avoided. As long as you maintain good oral hygiene and see your dentist on a regular basis, you can better care for your oral and overall health.
Should you need a trustworthy Etobicoke dentist for you and your family, book an appointment with Dr. Mark Rhody Dentistry today. Call us at (416) 231-4281.