As we age, personal care becomes quite difficult due to declining health, memory or physical ability. Activities such as oral care can be easily neglected among older adults as the effects might take a while to manifest in most. Some will ignore the occasional bad breath or toothache but with time, it will require a visit to a dentist, yet a few oral care practices could have avoided extreme measures.
Oral care for adults is necessary as certain oral conditions develop as we age. Such conditions include dry mouth, attrition, gum disease and other diseases such as oral cancer and thrush.
Tips for Oral Health for Older Adults
Visit your Dentist Regularly
Get your teeth and gums checked regularly as this will keep you a step ahead if you have any potential dental problems or complications.
Brush and Floss your Teeth Daily
Brush your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes. Use toothpaste that contains fluoride. Flossing once a day is also important. Avoid reusing floss.
Studies have linked tobacco to throat and mouth cancer as well as other serious conditions such as heart disease. Taking tobacco orally through chewing can accelerate decay due to the sugar in most tobacco formulations.
Regulate Your Sugar Intake
Make healthy decisions when consuming sugary treats and be on the look out for snacks filled with starch. Get into the habit of brushing after snacking to prevent the accumulation of sugars or starchy food particles.
For older adults with dentures, it is important for you to take care of them by following the instructions shared by your dentist. If you experience any problems with the dentures, visit your dentist immediately.
Increase your oral hydration by asking for medication that does not cause dry mouth. Alternatively, you can up your water intake, avoid alcohol and chew sugar-free gum.