Age in itself is a degenerating disease and brings many health issues with it. One such issue is declining oral health which is a major concern for people crossing 50. Although it is recommended to visit your dentist at least twice a year, but the frequency reduces when you grow up. This is because you are healthy enough to fight daily infections and regenerating damaged tissues. But with ageing your body starts becoming weak and health issues start popping up. By btaking a very good care of oral hygiene a person can prevent many forthcoming diseases. Let us discuss 5 major oral concerns.
1. Xerostoma (Dry Mouth)
Saliva in mouth is not only important to help start the digestion process but is also important to prevent infection entering the digestive system. Saliva acts as an antiseptic agent and fights infection thus preventing tooth decay. It also serves very important functions like chewing and swallowing. As we age the production of saliva decreases and thus results in the dryness of mouth.
- Avoid dehydration and consume plenty of fluids.
- Avoid caffeine and carbonated beverages.
- Quit tobacco or alcohol (if you consume), it causes dryness of mouth.
- Talk to your doctor if your medication is causing dry mouth.
2. Tooth decay
As seen above that dry mouth is one of the factors for tooth decay, another major concern is the lack of calcium in the blood or calcium resorption. This occurs due to the reduced capability of the body to absorb calcium from the diet, therefore the body starts absorbing calcium from calcium stores of the body like bones and teeth. The old fillings also don’t remain intact because of continuous tooth decay.
- Consult your dentist and start calcium supplementation.
- Regular flossing and brushing slows or stops decaying.
- Use of fluorides may help.
- Pay regular visits to your dentist.
3. Periodontal diseases
These are the diseases that and affect the teeth supporting structures like gums and bones supporting teeth. In most patients these diseases exist for a long duration of time before they show up. As the body grows older the body gives up fighting existing periodontal disease and the problem surfaces, but with a chronic condition. The teeth simply loosen up and fall out. The patient even does not feel pain.
- Never ignore any warning signals of your body. Any trouble in your dental structure should be discussed with your dentist.
- Use of oral antibiotics (as recommended by your dentist) can help cure periodontal diseases.
4. Clenching and grinding
Bad habits sometimes cost a lot. Clenching or grinding at the night or daytime erodes the teeth enamel and exposes the teeth to wear out. Teeth fractures can occur as age progress, which requires medical attention like crowning or even root canal treatment.
- Prevention is better than cure. Avoid Clenching and grinding.
- Your doctor may recommend a night guard if required.
5. Oral cancers
Smoking and tobacco are the major reasons for oral cancer. People who are chain smokers and consume any form of tobacco are at higher risk of getting oral cancers as the age progresses.
- Quit smoking immediately and avoid tobacco.
- Get a thorough check up done if you feel stress in your facial area.