Seniors Could use some Help, and We’ve Got it!
- Posted on: Feb 15 2018
Growing older is nothing to fear, especially in this day and age of innovation. Compared to our parents and grandparents, we are expected to live longer and to live more vital lives. This is good news, and it is also news that alerts us to our responsibility to ourselves. When it comes to oral health, the team in our Grand Rapids office has you covered. We perform general and restorative dentistry to protect and preserve healthy teeth and gums. How do we do this? By getting to know the unique needs of every stage of life.
The Extensive Repercussions of Poor Oral Health
We are passionate about helping our patients avoid the pitfalls of poor oral health. When teeth and gums develop problems, consequences can extend far beyond temporary pain and stress. Research has provided ample data to confirm that a healthy mouth supports a healthy body – and vice versa.
- Oral disease such as periodontitis and cavities are a result of bacteria. In studies on atherosclerosis and biomarkers for heart disease, researchers have discovered the same type of bacteria in cardiac arteries. This evidence suggests that bacteria can enter the bloodstream through the mouth and travel to vital organs.
- The heart is only one of the organs in which bacteria has been found. Researchers also believe that oral bacteria can settle in the lungs, increasing the risk for pneumonia and other infection.
- Type II diabetes is a condition that is often diagnosed later in life. The unpredictable nature of blood sugar in the diabetic puts a strain on the immune system. Inflammation is another matter that proves challenging in light of diabetes. Both of these side effects of unregulated blood sugar relate to oral health, making gum disease a prime dental concern.
Oral Care Tips that Work
Most adults recognize the value of brushing and flossing on a daily basis. Seniors, in particular, can benefit from strategies to make oral care easier.
- Brush with an electric toothbrush or sonic toothbrush. The mechanical rotation of the tip is beneficial for those with limited dexterity.
- Use a water flosser or flossing tooth that relieves you of the need to hold floss between your fingers. Flossing is a must for optimal oral care, so talk with your dentist about how this can become a stress-free practice.
- Remember that dentures matter. Adults with dentures may not have to worry about cavities, but they do need to attend to gum health. Daily denture cleaning is necessary. Soaking may be the best method of cleaning because brushing with hard bristles or abrasive toothpaste can cause discreet scratches that collect bacteria.
Posted in: Oral Health