When it comes to geriatric dental care, there are a lot of different steps and procedures seniors must do to take care of their teeth – things they didn’t have to do when they were younger. At the same time, nearly every dental tip and suggestion that applies to children and adults applies to the elderly. For example, avoiding sugary sweets and drinks and brushing your teeth daily are still important! However, there are certain tips that are primarily helpful to seniors.
1. Don’t Forget Your Dental Hygiene
Just because you’re older doesn’t mean seniors need to forget good dental hygiene methods that they’ve hopefully used throughout their lives. Brushing your teeth twice daily is just as important, if not more important, for the elderly as it is for young adults. The reason is because your teeth are more sensitive and vulnerable to damage when you’re older, so it’s vital to take good care of them. In addition, don’t forget to floss – it’s still important to prevent gum disease!
2. Dental Visits Are Just As Important
Your routine dental checkups are just as important as hygiene. The difference is when you’re young you can afford to miss an appointment here or there. One missed appointment as a senior and you can lose half of your teeth – not exaggerated at all. While it’s possible to maintain good, healthy teeth into your senior years, it makes double the work that it once did. Even then, regardless of how good your dental hygiene is, there is a lot that can only be seen by trained dentists and high-quality X-Ray machines, which is why it’s so vital to get constant checkups (twice per year, at least, are recommended).
3. Increase Your Vegetable Intake
While eating vegetables is good for physical and mental health, it’s also a vital aspect of oral health for seniors. As dry mouth is an extremely common problem among those over 65, usually caused by medication (as well as natural aging), it causes teeth to also get dry and crack much easier. Vegetable are known for being able to increase saliva production, meaning that the more vegetables you eat, the less damage that any dry mouth issues will cause to your teeth. With that said, it’s still important to see your dentist when experiencing dry mouth to ensure it’s not a symptom of something more serious.