Dental Conditions and Aging
The connection between a healthy mouth and a healthy body, and vice-versa, has become a well established concept these days. This relationship becomes increasingly important as we age, and dental care actually becomes a more critical part of our overall health. At our dental offices in Birmingham, Gardendale, Sumiton and Warrior serving Central Alabama communities, some of the most special smiles belong to our more mature patients. We’re always happy that they have chosen to make maintaining their oral health with Alabama Family Dentistry a priority, as the changes associated with another candle each year can have direct impacts on oral health.
We are fortunate to live in a world where we have access to medications to help treat a myriad of illnesses and conditions. However, while both prescription and over-the-counter medications are helping you manage your health issues, they can also lead to a reduction in saliva production, which can cause dry mouth. Dry mouth is much more serious than it sounds – it can negatively impact your oral health. And it affects older dental patients in greater numbers than others. In fact, an estimated 30 percent of America’s 65+ population suffers from dry mouth. In addition to being simply an uncomfortable condition, dry mouth has been found to contribute to significant increase in tooth decay and even progress to gum disease. And it also can contribute to yellowing and staining of your teeth – one of the primary indicators of aging teeth – because residue on your teeth from dark foods and beverages doesn’t get washed away by the natural action of saliva.
Gum disease is dangerous for everyone, and due to its progressive nature tends to develop more frequently in the age 40 and above population. Statistics indicate that 25% of persons age 65+ shows symptoms of gum disease, which can contribute to serious overall health problems including heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. The factors most commonly responsible for increasing the chance of developing gum disease include:
• Poor Diet
• Inadequate oral hygiene routine
Gum disease can be largely reversible, but it’s crucial to catch it early before permanent gum bone damage occurs. This makes regular appointments at one of our 4 dental offices in the Birmingham and central Alabama area even more important for more mature set.
Alabama Family Dentistry says that was we age keeping up with preventative dental care exams and regular dental cleaning appointments is as important as maintaining preventative medical care. Because the existence of certain medical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer can affect your oral health, we recommend discussing all your general health issues with our dentists. That way you will receive the best comprehensive treatment and be sure we are aware of, and accommodating any special needs. No matter what your age, call and schedule an appointment at one of our four conveniently located dental offices for your preventative care exam and cleaning. We always are happy to see you!