Tooth

Dental challenges as you grow older but wiser.*

While adults of all ages can have cavities, seniors can face unique dental challenges, such as:

  • Increased risk of developing decay around older teeth, and decay of the tooth root itself, if the gum tissue has receded.
  • Plaque may build up faster and in greater amounts.
  • Reduced dexterity and mobility may make daily oral hygiene habits more difficult
  • Medical or mental conditions may present additional challenges to maintaining or receiving regular care.
  • Vision or hearing loss may reduce a patient’s ability to cope with stress or to communicate clearly.
Checklist

Dental Dos and Don'ts

  • Don’t skip routine dental care. Visit your dentist regularly for professional cleanings and oral exams.
  • Don’t smoke. Smoking or chewing tobacco increases the risk of periodontal disease.
  • Do brush your teeth at least twice a day.
  • Do clean between teeth daily with floss or an interdental cleaner.
  • Do replace your toothbrush every three or four months or sooner if the bristles become frayed. A worn toothbrush will not do a good job of cleaning your teeth.
  • Do watch your diet. Eat a balanced diet and limit between-meal snacks.

Together, you and your dentist can
keep your teeth happy at every age.

Good oral hygiene and regular dental care are important whatever your age. Even if you no longer have your natural teeth, you should see your dentist regularly. They will check to see if there are any problems with the soft tissues in your mouth such as your gum ridges and tongue. Your jaw joints can also be evaluated along with an oral cancer screening.*