Good oral health and a complete set of working teeth are important for everyone, but this is especially true for older people. Here’s why:
Overall health deteriorates with age. Health may decline, but if the elderly started out healthy in their younger years, their health wouldn’t weaken that fast when they’re older. Studies have shown that oral health is linked to overall health, so good oral care also means good health care in general.
Aging affects the diet of a person. As people grow older, the type or quantity of food they’ll be allowed to eat will be limited, and they’ll be forced to switch to doctor-recommended meals. Older people with poor oral health will be prone to teeth sensitivity or gum pain, which may be triggered by specific types of food. Imagine aging people eating a meal that gives them discomfort, yet is needed by their body. They will likely be discouraged from eating, leading to a further decline in their health.
Elderly people feel insecure. A bright and happy smile perks up a person’s day. Whether an individual is older or younger, having a nice smile boosts his/her confidence – a trait many of the elderly lack. If elderly people have good oral health, smiling will come naturally and will cheer them up and the people around them.
Oral Health Solutions for the Elderly
For older people with incomplete teeth, a good fix would be cosmetic dentistry. Cosmetic dental devices, such as cosmetic dentures, dental bridges, and dental veneers, usually feel completely natural, and there is no need to periodically remove them. The bite also feels just like real teeth. The benefit is that they improve an older person’s appearance when he/she smiles.
Cleaning the new set of teeth or devices is in no way different from brushing and flossing, so older people can simply carry on with their daily oral habits without having to worry about any special cleaning requirement.
Along with cosmetic dentistry, other dental treatments and procedures can be paired to maximize the quality of the patients’ smiles. Some dental offices in London, such as the London Bridge Dental Practice, offer services, like gum contouring, that improve the health of the gums, and ensure that no dangerous condition, like periodontal disease, would take place. Teeth whitening can also be used to get rid of stains and discolouration from years of tea and coffee drinking.
Clean and white teeth are proven to make a person look younger and healthier. By making the elderly look and feel young and healthy through their teeth and smile, they will feel surer of themselves and will continue to have a better outlook in life in their sunset years.
(Caring for Older Adults’ Teeth: Improving Overall Quality of Life, bccare.ca)
(older people, dentalhealth.org)
(Dental care for older people, dentalhealth.org)
(Emotional effects of tooth loss in community-dwelling elderly people in Hong Kong, researchgate.net)