Oral Care as You Age

As you age, life begins to look different. You might appreciate your family more, dive deeper into hobbies or simply take things slower. However, just because you’ve grown wiser with time doesn’t mean you can stop caring for your teeth. Like other parts of your body, your teeth, gums and mouth will begin to show signs of aging. Find out some helpful tips to combat the health problems that come with this.

Common Issues

Dry Mouth

This condition comes from physical changes in your body as it ages. However, some medications can aggravate an already tough case. The CDC estimates that over 400 commonly prescribed medications have dry mouth as a symptom. Without normal saliva levels, your mouth has a harder time controlling bacteria and rebuilding enamel.

Attrition

After decades of chewing and grinding, your teeth will show signs of wear and tear. Attrition is simply a medical term for worn enamel and teeth. The less enamel you have to defend your teeth, the more prone to cavities you are. Similarly, as you age you become more susceptible to diseases of all kinds. With age may come a higher risk of conditions like oral cancer or thrush.

Root Decay

This issue is usually paired with gum disease, causes the roots of our teeth to become exposed as your gums recede, worsening tooth decay as you age. Root decay can be caused by neglect by a dentist, bad habits like tobacco use or a lacking diet. The best way to handle this and other problems is by talking to your dentist.

Combating Tooth and Gum Disease

While visiting your dentist is the best way to keep your mouth healthy, there are a few ways to keep your choppers in top shape. We recommend more fluoride to keep your teeth strong. Look for fluoridated toothpaste or mouthwash to use daily.

Tobacco is one of the big culprits behind mouth diseases. After decades of use, chewing tobacco or smoking can take a toll on your mouth. Beyond simple tooth and gum disease, these habits increase your risk of mouth and throat cancer as well as heart disease.

If you’re subject to dry mouth through medication, speak to your physician about switching the prescription. Dry mouth can impact your eating habits and harm your oral health. If a new medication isn’t an option, drink more water, chew sugar free gum and avoid alcohol to stay hydrated.