Aging and Your Oral Health | Health Explanation

Aging and Your Oral Health as You Hit Over 60, Explained

Because your body changes as you age, taking care of your health is more important than ever. From the tip of your toes to the top of your head, every aspect should be checked and taken care of. This means, giving oral care the attention it also deserves.

If you don’t know it yet, a second round of cavity occurs during prone years or when you hit your senior years. So don’t be surprised if you suddenly have cavities when you’ve never had them for the past 60 years or so. Whether you’re at home or living in an aged care residence, overall health should be a priority. This is especially true if you start experiencing common dental concerns in seniors.

Many high-end care homes, such as Arcare, a 5-star care facility and home care, provide overall care for seniors. Take advantage of this and ensure dental care is given priority.

Dental Concerns of Adults Over 60

1. Dry Mouth

Although not directly related to or a normal part of aging, dry mouth happens as a side effect of medications. More than 500 of them, which are used to treat high cholesterol, high blood pressure, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases, pain, and the like, can cause dry mouth.

If you are taking such medications, you’re likely to be affected. Dentists recommend several ways to combat the problem, including the use OTC oral moisturizers or mouthwash, to drink plenty of water, and to avoid foods that can exacerbate dry mouth.

2. Gum disease

Gum or periodontal disease is common among older adults for the reason that it is often painless until advanced stages have been reached. If left untreated, this can result in your gums being destroyed and in tooth loss.

Regular dental visits guarantee prevention. Double your efforts as you age to ensure that any gum disease can be treated the soonest time it is diagnosed.

3. Mouth Cancer

Each year, about 35,000 cases of mouth, throat, and tongue cancer are diagnosed, according to the American Cancer Society. And guess what’s the average age of the people diagnosed with this disease. Yes, 62 years and older.

Similar to gum disease, regular visits to the dentist can help prevent oral cancer and, if one already exists, treat it at the early stages. Because mouth cancer is painless at the start, it is important to visit a dentist.

You should also be on the lookout for common symptoms, such as white or reddish patches, open sores, and changes in the lining of the lips, tongue, and mouth.

Caring for an elderly loved one’s dental health

Are you in charge of looking after an older adult in the family?

To ensure a healthy mouth and teeth, remind them to brush and floss daily. If they are experiencing difficulties in carrying out such tasks, consult a dental hygienist or a dentist regarding a different approach and other helpful tips.

If an older adult is wearing dentures, pay close attention to their eating habits. Find out if they’re having difficulty eating or are eating less. Problems with their denture may be causing them.

They should see their dentists regularly as well.

If a senior is confined in bed, make other arrangements to ensure that oral health is still taken care of. After all, oral bacteria can be inhaled into the lungs, causing pneumonia and other problems.

Dental wellness affect your whole body in more ways than one. For seniors, oral problems can have a life-changing impact. Germs from inflamed gums, for example, can get into the blood stream and into the head’s neural channels, causing dementia and, eventually, Alzheimer’s disease.

On that note, give oral health the same level of attention as you would the rest of your body or even more.

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