Dental Tips for Seniors to Keep a Healthy Mouth
People of all ages should give importance to oral care especially as they get older, when dental hygiene is even more crucial.
Seniors can consider the following dental tips to avoid natural teeth loss, root decay and gum disease.
Check the toothbrush
Seniors have to think of the last time they changed their toothbrush. Is it the same style and brand of toothbrush since Nixon was still president? Does it have the proper bristle stiffness? What is best for them, manual or electric toothbrushes?
Aside from brushing with too much pressure, the bristles may be very stiff. They should ask their dentist about the type of toothbrush needed by seniors.
As suggested by dental professionals, a toothbrush needs to be replaced every 3 to 4 months or even sooner, when the bristles are irregular or worn out. When there is bacteria left behind on the teeth even after brushing, this can cause serious problems including periodontitis and gingivitis.
They need to floss their teeth everyday. Using a regular dental floss is the most effective way to clean tight spaces in between teeth.
There are some who like to use a water pick or an oral pulsated irrigator to remove the food remnants between their teeth. It may not be as effective as regular dental floss but it is a good alternative for flossing if this is not possible.
Smokers have double the risk of non smokers in acquiring gum disease. Aside from the harmful effects of smoking tobacco, this weakens the immune system as well as overall health, which makes it harder to fight back gum disease.
Those who smoke more frequently and for a longer time have a greater risk of acquiring periodontal disease and treatments may not be effective for them.
Smoking any form of tobacco, whether pipes, cigarettes, dip or more modern forms, increases the risks of getting gum disease. So the best advice is to refrain from smoking. Or better yet, quit the habit.
Dental problems can be caused by some health issues, most especially diabetes. Therefore, it is best to eat healthy, nutritious meals from the basic food groups to promote healthy teeth and gums.
This is not only a great dental tip but also a lifelong advice for seniors.
Watch out for Dry Mouth
It is natural for people to experience changes in their body as they age. One example is a dry mouth. When they consult a doctor they may ask about the medications they take that make their mouth dry.
They should drink lots of water, avoid booze and chew gum that is sugar-free.
Visit the Dentist Regularly
Aside from the above mentioned great dental tips, seniors should observe regular oral care.
It is a must to visit their dentist every 6 months besides eating healthy, practicing proper oral hygiene, flossing once daily, drinking fluoridated water and seeking regular oral health care.