Dental Care for Senior Citizens: Top 5 Tips for Healthy Smiles and Wellness

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As of the last available data, about 33% of all Australian adults over the age of 65 had lost all of their natural teeth. While tooth loss isn’t uncommon in old age, it is often avoidable with the right care. Proper dental care for senior citizens is essential.

But what does that care look like? Let’s talk about it. Read on for our top tips for senior oral hygiene and care.

1. Don’t Skip Dental Check-ups

Schedule regular dental check-ups and cleanings with your local dentist at least twice per year. Some seniors  and people with certain medical conditions and/or ongoing medications may need more frequent visits as recommended by their dental providers if they have unique dental health needs. Follow your dentist’s guidance.

Routine dental exams allow dentists to find and address oral health issues early. This helps them prevent more serious problems down the line. Your visits to the dentist also give you the opportunity to ask about any oral health concerns or changes you may be experiencing.

2. Stay Hydrated

Drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep your mouth moist and wash away food particles and bacteria. Dry mouth is incredibly common among seniors and those taking multiple medications per day. It can increase the risk of cavities and gum disease. Consult with your dentist for further Dry Mouth relief recommendations: in most cases, it is a condition that requires more supportive modalities than just keeping hydrated.

Drinking more water is good for your entire body, including your teeth and gums. Try to stick with plain water (or water with sugar-free flavourings) so you don’t add more sugar to your diet.

3. Follow Proper Denture Care

If you wear removable dentures, clean them daily to remove debris, plaque, and bacteria. You want to keep them as clean as possible so you don’t cause damage to your gums. Remember to always clean your teeth and dentures before going to bed

Soak your dentures overnight in a denture cleaner and brush them gently with a denture brush to prevent stains and bad odours. If you notice anything strange with the way your dentures are fitting, don’t hesitate to get them checked or replaced. You want them to be comfortable.

4. Brush and Floss Daily

Don’t neglect your senior dental care routine! Brush your teeth at least twice per day with fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush. Make sure to replace your toothbrush every few months for the best possible dental hygiene.

Proper brushing helps remove plaque, bacteria, and any trapped food debris that can lead to tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems. Even if you have no remaining natural teeth, it’s a good idea to brush your gums and tongue.

You should also floss at least once per day.

5. Stay Aware of Medication Side Effects

Some medications that are more common for seniors can have oral health side effects. These can include dry mouth, gum inflammation, or even unexpected changes in taste.

When you start a new medication, ask your doctor about any side effects and keep them in mind for your next dentist’s appointment.

Dental Care for Senior Citizens Matters

Proper dental care for senior citizens is important. Make sure you’re following these tips so you can maintain healthy teeth and gums in your golden years. You take care of the rest of your body, so why not your mouth?

At Bondi Dentists, we treat patients of all ages with the respect and care they (and their teeth) deserve. If you’re looking for a new dentist in Bondi Junction, we’d love to meet you! Reach out for an appointment today.