Dental Considerations & Care Tips For The Elderly
Dental practitioners treat patients of all ages daily. As we age, our teeth can become weaker and more susceptible to damage and loss, and it is important that we know how to take care of our teeth in the later stages of life.
Are you looking to improve your dental health as an older person?
Keep reading as we discuss the top dental considerations and care tips for the elderly. Accessing dental care in Maroubra can help you to access the best quality care for your teeth. You deserve to smile, eat, and talk comfortably and with confidence!
What’s Different About Dental Care For Elderly People?
The issues you encounter as an older person may differ from those of a younger individual. You may encounter the following dental problems and difficulties as an older adult:
- Dental sensitivity – since your dental enamel is older, it will be more worn down than the average person’s. This means that you will experience increased dental sensitivity as a senior citizen.
- Difficulty brushing – elderly and senior citizens can have arthritis and issues with their hands and arms that make brushing difficult. This means that maintaining oral health can become more challenging.
- Losing teeth – if you have lost teeth, you may need to take special care when cleaning your teeth and gums.
- Dry mouth – elderly dental patients often suffer from a dry mouth, leading to plaque buildup and discomfort. Saliva helps to wash away food and bacteria in the mouth, so a dry mouth can also lead to bad breath.
With these issues in mind, it is essential that your local Maroubra dentist provides you with care tailored to your needs.
How Dentists Provide Care For Elderly Patients
Your Maroubra dentist can help you to mitigate some of the dental issues you may encounter due to old age. Here are some of the treatments available to help provide you with more dental comfort:
- Special dental equipment – if you struggle to brush your teeth, your Maroubra dentist can provide various toothbrush handles and equipment to make your at-home dental care routine easier.
- Special mouthwashes – your Maroubra dentist can recommend special mouthwashes that can help you mitigate tooth sensitivity in your older years.
- Dry mouth products – if you have a dry mouth, you can use special lubricants, such as artificial saliva, to ensure your mouth does not become too dry and cause discomfort.
Your Maroubra dentist will discuss all possible treatment options with you to help you find the plan that best suits you.
Gum Disease And Elderly People
Gum disease is highly prevalent in older adults, and you are at greater risk of contracting gum disease as an older person. Here are some signs of gum disease to look out for:
- Bleeding gums.
- Tooth loss.
- Receding gums.
- Halitosis (bad breath).
You may exhibit one or more of these symptoms if you have gum or periodontal disease. To prevent gum disease and tooth decay in the later stages of life, you should take the following precautions:
- Thoroughly brush your teeth each morning and night, taking care not to miss any areas within the mouth.
- Use a toothpaste with a high concentration of fluoride. Your dentist will be able to recommend a toothpaste for you.
- Floss at least once a day.
- Reduce the sugar in your diet (sugar can encourage the growth of bacteria in the mouth).
- Quit smoking.
- Visit your Maroubra dentist for a dental cleaning every 6 months, and have a dental checkup regularly.
- Use an electric toothbrush for a more thorough cleaning.
How Can You Improve The Way Your Teeth Look In Your Later Years?
You can still sport a dashing white smile if you’re in your senior years. Here are some of our best tips for improving your smile confidence in your later years.
Teeth whitening allows you to brighten your smile with a gel. You can have the procedure performed at your Maroubra dentist or do it yourself at home. Teeth whitening can lighten your teeth significantly. It’s important to note, however, that if your teeth are highly stained, you will not be able to get them perfectly white with teeth whitening.
Dental Crowns And Bridges
Dental crowns and bridges are the best way to restore your smile if you have a missing or broken tooth. Missing teeth can cause severe confidence issues for the elderly, drastically affecting their ability to eat, drink, and speak normally. With dental bridges and crowns, your Maroubra dentist can fill the gap in your smile, allowing for more normal eating, drinking, and speaking.
Veneers are a great way to achieve a celebrity smile. To place veneers in your mouth, your Maroubra dentist will file down your natural teeth to attach a veneer. You can consider veneers as fake nails for your teeth.
Composite bonding can help protect your teeth if your enamel is thin. To apply composite bonding to your teeth, a Maroubra dentist will use a gel and harden it with UV light. The bonding will protect your teeth and give you a brighter smile!
Your dental care needs become more significant as you age. Your teeth are older and have experienced more wear and tear. So, you must take more care and responsibility for your teeth, ensuring you visit your dentist regularly. Your dentist can advise you on the best treatments and options to help you maintain your oral health. If you’re seeking a reliable and friendly dental service, why not contact our team at Maroubra Dental Clinic?