Seniors’ Oral Health

Seniors’ Oral Health

Due to healthier lifestyles, as well as advances in professional care, we can expect to keep most, if not all of our natural teeth as we enter our senior years. But keeping those teeth healthy can be a challenge.

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What items pose a risk?

A number of medications can cause dry mouth, a condition that can contribute to cavities and other oral problems. Seniors also develop more cavities on the roots of their teeth than younger adults. Perhaps most worrisome, bacteria from the mouth can travel and develop into serious infections affecting overall health.

In addition, many people do not realize the importance of maintaining the health of their mouth after they lose all or even some of their natural teeth. Food debris and bacteria continue to accumulate throughout the mouth, including on the tongue, remaining teeth, and dentures, forming plaque, which has the potential to cause cavities, odours, sores, and irritation.

What can each of us do?

A number of medications can cause dry mouth, a condition that can contribute to cavities and other oral problems. Seniors also develop more cavities on the roots of their teeth than younger adults. Perhaps most worrisome, bacteria from the mouth can travel and develop into serious infections affecting overall health.

In addition, many people do not realize the importance of maintaining the health of their mouth after they lose all or even some of their natural teeth. Food debris and bacteria continue to accumulate throughout the mouth, including on the tongue, remaining teeth, and dentures, forming plaque, which has the potential to cause cavities, odours, sores, and irritation.