Oral Care Tips For Seniors

When it comes to oral health, the focus is usually placed on making sure younger people are following a proper routine in order to preserve their teeth as they age. But if you've already reached an advanced age and still have all or most of your natural teeth, you are going to need some unique advice. Here are some oral care tips that might help you react to specific situations as you reach your senior years.

Increase Hydration to Avoid Dry Mouth

As your body ages, your mouth sometimes stops producing as much saliva as it used to. Saliva production could also be halted or slowed as the result of certain medications you might be taking as a senior. To counter this, you need to increase your daily hydration. Keep a bottle of water handy at all times and sip on it if you experience discomfort. If you want to further stimulate saliva production, chewing on a sugar free gum can also help.

Be on the Lookout for Advanced Disease

By the time you reach your senior years, you will be at greater risk of developing certain oral diseases. Gingivitis or periodontal disease are always a risk no matter how old you are, but as you age, you could also be at greater risk of developing an issue like oral cancer. Most dentists today can screen your mouth for these issues during a normal check up, so be sure not to miss an appointment.

Step Up Your Oral Care Routine

Even if you've been brushing and flossing properly for years, there might be more you can do to preserve your teeth in your senior years. Many dentists are willing to write a prescription for a stronger toothpaste with a higher fluoride amount for patients who need it. Senior patients are often at greater risk of developing cavities or root problems due to a lifetime of chewing that can wear down your tooth enamel. You may be able to upgrade your mouthwash to one that has additional anti-bacterial properties. 

Stop Smoking

Yes, you've probably heard this one before and if you've smoked your whole life and made it to your senior years, you probably don't want to stop now. But if you are still a smoker, then quitting smoking is honestly the single best thing you can for your teeth and the rest of your body at this point.

As the human mouth ages, your teeth and gums might become more susceptible to cavities or disease. You can stay ahead of things by getting a regular screening from your dentist and by stepping up your oral care routine. Contact your dental office, like Couchman Center for Complete Dentistry, today for more information.