As a senior, you may have some vulnerability to dental issues. Decreased saliva in your mouth, for instance, makes it easier for bacteria and decaying food to linger in the mouth. Osteoporosis and loss of bone density can naturally reduce the health of the teeth and jawbone. For these reasons and others, it's important for all seniors to develop a great dental care routine. Here are some dental care tips to follow.
Get Help Brushing and Flossing
Brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing at least once a day can become a challenge for seniors. It may be hard to remember these routines, or a loss of sight and dexterity can make it more difficult to do a thorough job. Get help with these routines if necessary to make sure the job is done well each day.
Consider Desensitizing Toothpaste
If tooth sensitivity is an issue, it may make you less likely to brush your teeth correctly each day. You may not want to aggravate your teeth as it can cause pain down to the bone. Asking your dentist for desensitizing toothpaste can help make the toothbrushing process go more smoothly and eliminate pains throughout the day.
Monitor Gum Health
Periodontal disease can be a major issue for seniors' dental health. Over many years of plaque build up under the gums, you can begin to have a chronic low-level infection of the gums. This may become more severe over time and become a health threat.
Your dentist can check the health of your gums by gently prodding the gums to test for pain, and by monitoring changes in size and color of the gums over time. With small infections, a deep cleaning and plaque removal may be all that's needed. In more severe cases, seniors may need to take an antibiotic to reduce the number of bacteria in the mouth. In each case, your dentist should also help you to establish a more complete method for cleaning your gums on your own.
Keep Visiting the Dentist
Finally, one of the best things you can do for dental health is to keep visiting the dentist on a regular basis. A regular dental cleaning and checkup is important for all ages to ward away plaque and check for early signs of dental problems. Even if you wear dentures, it's important for a dentist, such as one at Dillon Family Dental PLLC, to check the health of your gums to make sure there is no infection.