Most seniors have engaged in caring for their teeth and mouths for the majority of their lives, but it becomes even more crucial to do so as they grow older. There are a lot of different reasons for your elderly family member to prioritize her dental health. Here are just a few of them.
She Might Be More Likely to Have Certain Health Issues
There’s a big connection between dental health and several different health issues. Poor dental health can leave your senior vulnerable to heart disease, to diabetes, and even make her more susceptible to pneumonia. If your elderly family member is already at risk of certain health issues, then it’s even more important for her to pay attention to her dental health.
She Could Can Reduce Dry Mouth
Dry mouth is common for many aging adults. With age, salivary glands can stop working as well, but there’s more to it than that. Your senior may also take medications that have side effects that make dry mouth worse. When your elderly family member is battling dry mouth, she might find it more difficult to eat and she may feel uncomfortable. Both of those are bad situations.
She Can Slow Down Tooth Decay
Paying attention to dental health can also help your senior to slow down tooth decay. One major contributing factor to tooth decay is dry mouth, but your senior’s dentist can also spot potential issues that enable your senior to hold onto her teeth longer. Even if that’s not possible and your senior does need to lose some of her teeth, proper dental care ensures that she has assistive tools, like dentures, that can help her to continue to eat.
She Can Preserve Her Ability to Eat Healthy Foods
Many people with dental issues find that it’s too painful to eat or that they can’t eat a variety of healthy foods. That might leave your senior eating foods that are not nutritionally helpful at all, and that leads quickly to malnutrition. Proper dental care can help her to maintain her ability to eat, which is absolutely vital in helping her to stay as healthy as possible for as long as she can.
Dental care means getting your senior to the dentist regularly, of course, but it also means daily dental hygiene. If that’s becoming difficult for your senior, elderly care providers can help her with tooth brushing, denture care, and other personal care tasks, too.