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What Are Some Common Dental Problems Among the Elderly?

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Good oral hygiene is important for people of all of ages, but the elderly have a greater risk of developing certain dental problems. If your senior loved one’s daily hygiene habits are not properly maintained, this risk may increase. The staff at Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior home care Chandler families trust, has put together a list of common senior dental problems to watch for.

Dry Mouth

Dry mouth is a result of decreased salivary flow. Certain medications, radiation treatments for cancer, Sjogren’s syndrome, and other diseases can cause dry mouth. This condition can be uncomfortable, but it can also increase your loved one’s chances of developing oral infections, gum disease, and tooth decay. To prevent dry mouth, your loved one can brush with fluoride toothpaste and drink more water instead of sugary beverages.

Denture-Related Stomatitis

Denture-related stomatitis refers to the inflamed tissue between a senior’s jaw and his or her dentures. Dentures that do not fit, poor brushing practices, and Candida overgrowth can all cause this painful condition. However, proper sanitization, ensuring your loved one’s dentures are removed for 6-8 hours of the day, and professional plaque control are all good preventive measures.

Periodontitis

Also called gum disease, periodontitis is a serious condition that can result in tooth decay and loss. Plaque is the main culprit behind gum disease, but poor dental hygiene can cause bacteria to build up and increase the damage. Certain medications can also make some seniors more likely to develop periodontitis. A regular oral hygiene routine can help prevent this condition.

Uneven Jawbone

Many elderly people lose their teeth, often as a result of gum disease. When those teeth are not replaced, the remaining teeth can shift. Sometimes these teeth just become crooked, but other times this shifting can cause the jawbone to become uneven. An uneven jawbone can lead to problems with biting, which could make it very difficult to eat. However, an hourly or live-in caregiver in Chandler can help your loved one maintain good hygiene habits to help prevent this from occurring.

Seeing your loved one’s healthy smile will be a constant reminder that his or her daily dental hygiene is important. If your loved one needs help with this and other regular grooming routines, reach out to Home Care Assistance. Because many seniors face additional challenges that may make it difficult to perform these tasks, we also offer specialized Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and post-stroke care Chandler seniors can rely on. For more information, call one of our qualified Care Managers at 480.448.6215 to schedule a complimentary consultation.