Seniors need to pay extra care to their dental health. Dental health is as important as physical and mental health. As seniors age, they are prone to serious oral issues like dental infections, enamel loss, benign mucosal lesions, and oral cancer. Poor oral health is also associated with issues like heart disease, cholesterol, diabetes, stroke or pneumonia. If oral pain is untreated, it can cause problems with chewing and eating, which can severely harm senior nutrition and could possibly land you in the hospital.
Oral health problems are quite common in older adults. Here’s a detailed list of oral issues that seniors need to be aware about:-
Just like falls or cognitive decline, experiencing a very dry mouth is not considered a part of the normal aging process. Dry mouth usually refers to not having adequate saliva that keeps the mouth moist. This can cause problems when you chew, eat, swallow, and sometimes during talking too. Saliva is also ideal to protect your mouth from bacteria as a dry mouth can increase your risk for tooth decay.
Dry mouth is caused by various reasons like:
- Side effects from over the counter medications. Many medications that are used to treat conditions like depression, anxiety, insomnia, high cholesterol and high blood pressure can cause dry mouth in the elderly.
- Undergoing radiation or chemotherapy
- Any injury that happened on the head or neck
Many seniors have gum issues called periodontal diseases. It is caused due to the bacteria in plaque which not only irritate the gums but makes them swollen and bleed. Gum diseases are too common and widespread among seniors as it is often a painless condition until it aggravates to the advanced stage. If gum issues are left untreated, they begin to pull away from the teeth, forming deep spaces called pockets where food particles and more plaque may get collected. Advanced gum disease can damage the gums, bone and tear the ligaments supporting the teeth resulting in tooth loss.
Mouth pain is a severe sign of toothache. If left untreated then the toothache or other pain in the mouth can result in difficulty while eating. While undergoing this pain, seniors need to avoid certain kinds of foods or reduce their consumption of calories to prevent any other discomfort. We are the best retirement community in Chennai looking after seniors’ health through adequate nutrition and balanced diets.
It is said that the average age of most people diagnosed with mouth cancer is 62. While going for dental visits, your dentist will be checking for any signs that show oral cancer. Regular dental visits are considered important because oral cancer typically does not cause pain during the initial stages and early detection can save many lives. Various symptoms seniors may see includes open sores, white or reddish patches, and changes in the lips, tongue and lining of the mouth that lasts for more than two weeks.
The risk of oral cancer increases after the age of 55. Pain is not an early sign of the disease which is why it’s important to be vigilant about any changes that occur in the mouth. Never let preventable dental issues like sores negatively affect your health. Brush and floss daily, and go for dental check-ups at least once per year to help keep the mouth and body healthy.
Being vigilant during any gum issue is what matters because early detection helps. We are the best retirement home in Chennai taking extreme care of our residents and looking after them like our own. Certified doctors and nurses are available 24/7 to help with any illness. We make sure to look after the welfare of our residents by resolving all senior concerns so that they enjoy a tension-free retirement. Come witness your golden years at its best. Consult with us on +91 99419 95555 to know more about us.