Dentistry for seniors is a serious matter. As people get older, it is natural that they neglect some aspects relative to maintaining good health. Unfortunately, dental hygiene is one of the significant elements that undergo desertion. At this age of older adults, they are more at risk of developing dental health issues. However, there are medical conditions that cause difficulty for them to maintain proper oral hygiene. Visit your nearest dental clinic today if you need quality dental care.
Prioritizing dental health of older adults
We have several reasons why we should make dental care for the elderly our utmost priority.
- Older adults tend to develop tooth decay because of a dry mouth. Dry mouth often happens to senior patients as a side effect of the medications they take, such as anti-depressants or for high blood pressure.
- In general, seniors are prone to develop gum diseases. Unfortunately, there are cases wherein symptoms don’t show. Not until the stage progresses.
- Tooth loss is a realistic scenario for seniors. They might not be able to eat fresh foods like before. Therefore, it can affect their overall health significantly.
- Furthermore, gum disease can even lead to heart disease. Aside from that, this disease can also increase the risk of stroke.
- Overall, it wouldn’t be easy to maintain balanced health aspects as we age. One of these is blood sugar control. Those with poor sugar control have more oral health problems.
- Additionally, older adults who do not practice proper oral hygiene are at risk of bacterial pneumonia. The bacteria in the mouth can travel to the lungs.
- For the most part, there is a high risk for oral cancers. A visit to the dentist will help identify the condition earlier. In effect, they can apply immediate treatment options to prevent progression.
As shown above, dental hygiene can significantly affect an elderly’s health condition. Here is a short video to show more of the dental issues an individual can face as they age.
For these reasons, how can we improve the oral health condition of senior family members? We are just on the right part of the article. Let us proceed to get the answers.
Improving seniors’ dental health
Through these simple steps, you can save a senior’s oral health condition. You can help them maintain their teeth and mouth in a healthy state.
- Remind them to brush their teeth twice a day. You can also consider providing them with a soft, electric toothbrush to make it easier for them.
- Additionally, include flossing in your reminders. However, if the elders find it difficult to do the usual flossing technique, you may ask your dentist for alternatives.
- At their age, they are probably using dentures already. It would be best to remind them to clean the dentures daily and remove them during the night.
- Never miss a single dental appointment for them. It is the best preventive care you can give the seniors. Regular dental visits will help prevent oral problems. Besides that, it even allows them to have early detection of potential oral diseases.
- Moreover, it would also help if your dentist knows the medical history of the senior patients. This way, they can work out the side effects, such as the dry mouth.
- Prepare a healthy and well-balanced diet for them. It would be better not to give the elders food with high-sugar content.
- If they are still smoking, it would be best to convince them to quit it. The doctor can suggest strategies to help them stop slowly.
As we get older, the immune system is also deteriorating. In effect, older adults are more likely to develop several health conditions. But then again, we can still do something about it.
Dental care opportunities for seniors
In older age, we cannot remove the fact that opportunities decrease for us to afford regular dental care. Unfortunately, several elderly are in this state, so they cannot maintain regular dental care.
On the positive side, some dentists offer their services at a low price or sometimes, for free. One option that can help the seniors is dental care coming from the support of the community. Non-profitable organizations arrange events that offer reduced prices or free dental care to seniors.
Aside from that, dental insurance providers are also available. If possible, securing dental insurance for a senior member will be helpful. As a result, it won’t be difficult for them to maintain a regular dental check-up.
Dental insurance may not cover all the expenses. However, a reduction in dental costs is already a huge help for them. It won’t be that stressful to shoulder somehow. Aside from that, they can also consider dental saving plans or dental discount plans.
There should only be someone who can guide the seniors to acquire any of these. The seniors should not miss out on these opportunities. Coordinating with the right people would help as well.
Importance of proper dental care
Dental care is essential regardless of the current age. Generally speaking, it can affect anyone. For this reason, preventive dental care is necessary, whatever the age is. However, for the case of our senior members, they might need extended caring. It happens that they have more concerns than the younger individuals.
Besides that, some seniors can no longer perform their dental care on their own. Seniors can experience trouble using their hands or have dementia. For these reasons, they will be expecting extra help from the people who genuinely care for them. Check here the services offered for older people with health problems.
Dental care is an aspect that no one could neglect to maintain a good overall health condition.