What affects dental health in old age?
Quite a few factors affect dental health when you grow older. For example, decay around fillings or at the gum line can cause dental problems. A lack of oral hygiene, excessive smoking and poor nutrition can also cause gum diseases and oral cancer. Another common factor affecting dental health in older people is the side effects of medication they may be taking. From an economic perspective, inability to afford dental treatments can also contribute to dental problems. Here are some dental care tips that can help you maintain good dental health in old age.
Choosing the right toothbrush and toothpaste
Senior citizens should choose toothbrushes with soft bristles to avoid causing damage to their gums. Hard and medium bristles can pull away the gum tissue from the teeth, exposing the tooth’s root, making it vulnerable to damage. This makes the tooth/teeth more sensitive and can also result in tooth loss over a period of time. The toothbrush should comfortably fit in the mouth and should ideally have a rounded front. It is a good idea to buy an electric toothbrush for easy and effective cleaning. Toothpaste containing fluoride is recommended as it prevents formation of cavities. If you suffer from any dental problems, your dentist can also advise you the right products to use to mitigate the effect of such problems.
Floss and mouthwash
Electric flossers can make the job of flossing more convenient and avoid the risk associated with ruining the gums when flossed manually. Mouthwash is also an important oral hygiene product. Rinsing the mouth with a fluoride mouthwash prevents cavities. The routine of flossing and rinsing mouth using mouthwash should be incorporated in your daily schedule religiously. Two times daily is ideal and but another additional time after a meal is even better. Rinsing your mouth with mouthwash is not only great for oral hygiene, but also ensures fresh breath.
It is not only important to choose the right denture products but also to clean them well each night. The dentures can be brushed with suitable toothpaste, but it is important that they are soaked in water to which dental cleansing tablets are added. This prevents bacterial growth and keeps your mouth clean. Ill fitting dentures and lack of a proper denture cleaning regime can cause the growth of fungus Candida albicans and result in a condition known as stomatitis. Be aware of this problem and ensure that your denture fit in your mouth comfortably.
A diet rich in calcium can keep teeth strong and healthy. Starchy food can cause a build-up of bacteria, hence it is best to wash the mouth thoroughly after eating bread, pasta and crisps. Cutting down on smoking and alcohol consumption can also promote better oral hygiene. Both smoking and excessive drinking can take off years from your life weakening your body and making it more prone to aging quickly. So, stay away from either of these habits and lead a healthy lifestyle eating a well balanced and nutritious diet.
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