Dental care is dental care, regardless of your age. From an early age we are all trained to brush our teeth and floss daily in order to avoid cavities, tooth decay and gum disease. When you reach age 60 and beyond, nothing changes – your teeth are still as important as ever (if not more important). The biggest difference is sensitivity, as teeth do weaken over time, not only does it become more important to take care of them, it becomes vital to take good care of them. For example, there are correct and incorrect ways to brush your teeth. When you’re 30, however, brushing incorrectly won’t have much of an effect, at least in the short term. On the other hand, making simple mistakes even while having good overall oral hygiene can be very detrimental.
That is why these four tips are specifically made for seniors:
- Have a Dental Exam Every Six Months
The importance of frequent dental exams cannot be overstated. In a short 6 month period, a seniors teeth can go from perfect to catastrophic. The only sure way to know is to get detailed X-Rays. When you’re younger, once a year suffices, but as you reach senior-state, you should see a dentist once every six months at a minimum.
- Continue To Floss Daily
Flossing is definitely annoying, and as you get older it can even become a little painful. The benefits are unworldly however, and the importance of flossing even as you age do not change. In fact, gum disease, the main issue that flossing tries to prevent, can become prevalent in a seniors mouth much easier than a young adult, which increases the importance of daily losing.
- Fluoride Is Your Best Friend
For years dentists have been preaching the importance of fluoride-based toothpaste as it helps whiten teeth and strength tooth enamel. However, when you’re younger you’ll suffice with non-fluoride toothpaste. In your elder years there is simply no good substitute for fluoride and you should add a fluoride based mouthwash to go along with your toothpaste to ensure the healthiest and longest-lasting teeth possible.
- Treat Issues Immediately
Gone are the days where you can let a toothache pass on its own. Any oral problems – from toothaches to increased (or decreased) sensitivity to dry mouth have to be looked at immediately. The idea of dental emergency is almost everything as a senior, as something as simple as toothache can be signs of serious issues. As with all health problems, the sooner you catch it and get it treated, the better.