The older you are, the higher risk you have of developing gum disease and other oral health conditions. That is why it is especially important for seniors to take extra good care of their dental health. If you take the extra time to tend to your teeth and gums, you can avoid painful problems in the future.
Here are some general dentistry tips for senior citizens.
Switch to an Electric Toothbrush
If you are one of the many seniors with arthritis, you may find it more difficult to hold onto a regular toothbrush. This may deter you from brushing your teeth as often as you should. If this is the case, consider switching to an electric toothbrush. It cleans your teeth more effectively than a standard toothbrush and does most of the work for you.
Take Good Care of Your Dentures
Tooth loss is more common among the elderly, so many seniors wear dentures. If you wear dentures, it is important to clean them every day with a denture solution. Otherwise, they can accumulate bacteria, which can transfer to your gums and increase the risk of infection.
Remind Yourself to Floss
Gum disease is more common among the elderly and can lead to tooth loss and other issues if not addressed promptly. One of the best ways to lower your risk of gum disease is to floss between your teeth once a day. If you have difficulty remembering to floss every day, consider setting a reminder on your smartphone.
Visit the Dentist Regularly
As you get older, it becomes even more important to see your dentist twice a year. During these checkups, your dentist will check for oral health conditions that are common among the elderly, such as tooth decay, gum disease, and oral cancer.
Reduce Dry Mouth
Dry mouth is also more common among seniors, which can increase the risk of tooth decay. That is why you should do everything you can to increase saliva flow, such as drinking eight glasses of water a day and chewing sugar-free gum. If you take any medications that increase dry mouth, you should talk to your doctor about alternative options.
If you follow these helpful tips, you can maintain good oral health as a senior citizen. If it has been more than six months since your last dental checkup, you should schedule an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible.
For more information, contact a general dentistry clinic in your area.