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How Oral Health Changes as We Age

September 9th is National Grandparents Day, which is the perfect time to talk about oral health for aging adults! Whether you’re a grandparent who wants a great smile for all the photos and selfies with the grandkids, or you’re wondering how aging affects your teeth, there are some great tips that you should know for your oral health.

Did you know that your oral health directly affects the health for the rest of your body? As much as we think about heart or digestive health as we age, we should be equally focusing on our mouths as well.

Seniors are also at a bigger risk for poor oral health for a variety of reasons.

Loss of dental insurance

As older adults go into retirement, many will lose dental insurance coverage. Additionally, the federally-funded Medicare does not cover routine dental care. You may need to turn to private insurance companies or even the AARP to find dental insurance specifically tailored to seniors.

Dry mouth

Saliva production is affected by certain medications, and statistically, senior adults generally take more prescription medication compared to other age groups. With less saliva comes an increased chance for periodontal disease and other oral issues. Try chewing on sugar-free gum as a solution to this potential issue.

Arthritis

Pain in the joints, especially in our arms and hands, can make it more difficult to care for our teeth. Because of this, many older adults aren’t cleaning their teeth as well as they could be, which will lead to poor oral health. Invest in an electric toothbrush and work with your dentist to find other tools that will help you maintain a proper oral care routine.

Denture-induced stomatitis

If you don’t properly care for your dentures, you could develop an infection in your mouth that will not only make it harder to wear your dentures later on, but also lead to periodontal diseases that may be difficult to treat. Make sure to clean your appliances daily with cleaning products designed specifically for dentures.

Let our Long Beach dental team help you care for your teeth, no matter what age you are. Our family-centered dentistry has served the area for many years, providing healthy smiles young and old.

Book now using our online system, or by calling us at 562-434-6414.

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