Dental Care and The Elderly.

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Dental health is important at all ages, but it can decline as you get older.

Even with vigilant dental care as a child and an adult, a whole host of dental related problems can emerge later in life. Tooth sensitivity and tooth loss are not just a fact of life as you age, they can be prevented. Here are some things you should know about your oral health as you age!

Oral diseases are most common in elderly people

Tooth decay and other oral diseases are very common among people over the age of 65. Many people may not have grown up with fluoride products such as toothpaste, which help to protect teeth. Older people may also be disabled or homebound, which puts them at risk for poor oral health as they may not be able to visit a dentist regularly.

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Teeth will become more sensitive

Gum disease becomes more common with age. Nearly 25 percent of people between ages 65 and 74 suffer from severe gum disease. The severity of gum disease is measured by a loss of attachment of the tooth to adjacent gums. Receding gums will expose tooth enamel, which causes sensitivity making eating and drinking hot and cold foods/drinks uncomfortable. If this is something that affects you, try toothpaste that is formulated for sensitive teeth. If that doesn’t work, speak to your dentist as this may indicate there are further problems.

Medications are likely to affect oral health

Nearly 90 percent of people over age 65 use at least one prescription drug. Sometimes, certain medications can cause excessive dry mouth. Dry mouth is not only uncomfortable, but it can lead to cracked lips, a fissured tongue and cavities. It is also a cause of bad bread (halitosis). People suffering from dry mouth should drink or sip water regularly and limit alcohol and drinks high in sugar and caffeine.

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Oral health can always be improved

Nowadays, toothbrushes can be adapted to make the handle longer or more comfortable to hold. If brushing is difficult, an electric toothbrush can be used instead of a manual one. Daily brushing can help prevent tooth decay. Cleaning dentures and brushing remaining teeth is also important for oral health. Dentures should also be cleaned with a toothbrush and denture cleaner or baking soda.

Find a dentist near you!

Visits to the dentist are important at all ages. If you need to register with a dentist, or register someone in your family with a dentist, you can do so at www.defactodentists.com. On our website, we have thousands of UK dentists who are ready and waiting to treat patients. All you have to do is a simple location search and then browse through the practices near you. Join thousands of others who have found their perfect dentist all thanks to Defacto Dentists.

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