Your Oral Health Matters
Our teeth play an important role in our lives. They help us eat, speak clearly, and smile. Your teeth give your face its shape and help you look your best. Studies have shown that the health of our teeth affects our diet, overall health, and sense of well-being.
When our mouths are healthy, we can look great – and feel great – at any age. As we grow older, our oral health becomes even more important. Your mouth changes as you age. The nerves in your teeth can become smaller, making your teeth less sensitive to cavities and other problems. That means if you don’t see your dentist regularly, these problems can go undiagnosed until it’s too late.
There are many benefits to getting regular dental check-ups and cleanings. They can help prevent toothaches, tooth decay, and tooth loss. They can help preserve your natural teeth and keep any implants, crowns, and dentures in tip-top shape. Remember, with proper care, your teeth can last a lifetime.
Oral Health Tips for Older Adults
How can you keep your mouth healthy? Follow these tips.
- Brush twice a day with a toothbrush with soft bristles – once after breakfast and once before bedtime. An electric toothbrush can make brushing easier.
- Clean between your teeth once a day with floss or another flossing tool.
- If you wear full or partial dentures, clean them every day. Take your dentures out of your mouth for at least four hours every day. It’s best to remove them at night.
- Drink tap water. Since most contains fluoride, it helps prevent tooth decay no matter how old you are.
- Quit smoking. Besides putting you at greater risk for lung and other cancers, smoking increases problems with gum disease, tooth decay, and tooth loss.
- Visit your dentist regularly for a complete dental check-up and cleaning. Learn more about aging and dental health at MouthHealthy.org, a website brought to you by the American Dental Association.