What Are the Most Common Dental Issues Faced by Seniors?
A tough reality of ageing is an increase in health issues. Your mouth and teeth are not exempt from these issues, and unfortunately, there are some common dental problems senior citizens must face. However, knowing what to look out for and working with your Parramatta dentist can help with early diagnosis and successful treatment.
The appearance and structure of teeth change with age. Your dentist in Parramatta understands that discolouration and yellowing are common complaints among older patients. It is often due to medications, changes in the dentin and enamel, abrasion and attrition.
Dry mouth and bad breath
Older adults are often more susceptible to dry mouth (Xerostomia) due to an increase in medication needed and a reduction in saliva production. Dry mouth is not merely a social concern. It can also increase the occurrence of cavities and tooth decay.
Patients who experience dry mouth can often simultaneously experience halitosis (bad breath). While sometimes caused by lifestyle factors such as diet, poor dental hygiene practices and medications, bad breath may also be an underlying symptom of other conditions such as ear, nose and throat issues, poor gut health, diabetes and gum disease. In addition, dentures and bridges may also contribute to halitosis due to the build-up of food particles and bacteria.
Parramatta dentists will work with you to help identify the causes of dry mouth and bad breath. To help reduce symptoms of dry mouth, try frequently consuming water, sugar-free gum and lozenges. Humidifiers, mouthwashes and oral moisturisers can also help. A more thorough cleaning, flossing, antimicrobial rise and tongue scraping routine may help alleviate the presence and severity of bad breath.
Tooth decay, tooth loss and gum disease
Periodontal disease (aka gum disease) is the inflammation of the gums caused by a build-up of plaque and bacteria. Left untreated, it can affect the surrounding bone and teeth’s structural integrity. It is vital that older patients maintain regular visits to their dentist in Parramatta for checkups and routine cleanings to help prevent and detect gum disease.
Tooth decay and gum disease are the leading causes of tooth loss in mature-aged people, with receding gums and bone deterioration being two of the most common contributing factors.
The mouth is how most nutrients and substances access the rest of your body. The condition of our teeth and gums can impact the health of our bodies and vice versa. Chronic diseases that impact oral health include:
Uncontrolled blood sugar is detrimental to blood vessels, making diabetes suffers more susceptible to infections and gum disease. High blood sugar levels increase the acidity in the mouth, compromising enamel and increasing the likelihood of tooth decay and cavities.
Oral cancer can occur anywhere in the mouth and is commonly found on the tongue, gums, tonsils or oropharynx. While there are a range of contributing factors, smoking and alcohol consumption, HPV infection, and a suppressed immune system are three common contributors.
· Inflammatory conditions – can lead to dry mouth, gum inflammation and recession.
Parramatta Dental Avenue are here to help. Our experienced team understands the challenges seniors face and are here to support patients in their dental health needs with sensitivity and kindness. Contact us today to book an appointment.
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