Dental Care In Calgary – Taking Care of Seniors

Maintaining great oral hygiene can keep you denture free and smiling well in to your golden years.  Our previous blogs have explained that tooth loss is attributed to periodontal disease – which can be prevented when diagnosed early and treated accordingly.  Getting older doesn’t mean tooth loss and dentures - but it does mean taking care of your dental health.

Shawnessy Dentist – Dr. Andy Hoe – and his team at Bite Dental strive to give patients the service, knowledge and tools to help them achieve optimal dental health – and that includes providing dental care to senior patients.  Just like young patients require additional assistance in keeping their baby teeth pearly white; senior patients can also benefit from some specialized dental attention in order to keep teeth, gums and bone, in good health.

Gum Disease (periodontal disease) is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults due to inflammation and infection of tissues surrounding teeth.  Gum disease invariably begins as Gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) and consists of puffy gums that bleed easily when brushed.  When not treated early, Gingivitis can develop in to Gum Disease and Periodontitis which involves not only gum tissue but bone and ligaments that support teeth.   50% of seniors aged 64 to 75 have gum disease – and if not controlled with regular dental cleanings and effective home care routine, most will go on to experience tooth loss.

So why is Gum Disease prevalent in seniors? There is usually more than one factor at play, but Gingivitis and Gum Disease always develops from a buildup of bacteria on tooth surfaces which is usually the result of inadequate brushing and flossing.  Add in to the mix other factors like diabetes, osteoporosis, taking medications which dry the tissues of the mouth, smoking for decades, poor food choices and autoimmune conditions - the perfect environment for inflammation and infection then exists.

Physical limitations also play a part in a seniors oral health.  Obviously for some seniors who are unable to leave their home/care facility they are unable to  benefit from regular visits to their SW Calgary Dentist.  But even seniors living in their own home may face daily physical challenges, especially if they suffer from arthritis, as actions like daily brushing and flossing can be exhausting and easily skipped.  The use of an electric toothbrush can provide great benefit to someone suffering from arthritis – the chubby handle is easier to hold and the programmed action of the toothbrush effectively removes food remnants and plaque.  And if lack of dexterity prevents a patient from flossing, the use of an electric toothbrush becomes even more valuable.

Dr. Andy Hoe explains that keeping teeth and oral tissues healthy as we age contributes to overall good health and prevents unnecessary tooth loss – which is definitely something to smile about.

Bite Dental is located in the community of Shawnessy and welcomes new patients - call today to book an appointment or to enquire about dental services.  403.201.2483

 

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