1. Get Special Dental Hygiene Equipment
For some seniors, brushing and flossing can become difficult, but there are specialized hygiene equipment that can help. For example, you could get a toothbrush with a longer handle. Some people with arthritis put a tennis ball into the back end of the toothbrush to make it easier to maneuver.
Tongue depressors will help prevent your tongue from getting in the way of brushing and flossing. And using floss sticks or interdental picks can ease the difficulty of flossing. Even a simple washcloth can be used to remove food particles that stubbornly stick to your teeth if you can’t get them off with a toothbrush.
2. Properly Care For Dentures & Bridges
Any dental appliances in your mouth call for extra attention. Make sure you have all maintenance tools needed to keep your dentures and bridges in top condition at all times.
Also, consider getting dental implants – including all-on-4 implant-supported permanent dentures. This will greatly reduce the maintenance load because modern implants need no more care than do natural teeth.
3. Be Extra Cautious About Your Gums
There are many gum-related problems suffered by seniors. This is the time to be especially careful to keep your gums in good condition.
If your gum line is badly receding, you may want to consider PST grafts, which are a non-invasive procedure for restoring gums to their natural position.
If you have signs of periodontal disease like gum inflammation or soreness, “pink in the sink” after brushing, or teeth that are seemingly coming loose or shifting in your mouth, see your local periodontist for a check-up and any needed periodontal treatment.
4. Know The Warning Signs Of Tooth Loss
When tooth roots are exposed by a low gum line, your teeth are at risk. If teeth are hyper-sensitive, discolored, have worn-down enamel and/or dentin, or are unstable in your mouth, you could be at high risk of tooth loss.
Don’t wait until it’s too late – regular dental and periodontal checkups and consistent and proper dental hygiene practices can prevent tooth loss. But if a tooth must come out, be aware there are tooth restoration methods available, such as dental implants, that can restore your natural smile.
5. Develop A Dental Hygiene Routine That Works For You
You can’t rely only on corrective measures. It’s important to take good care of your gums and teeth from day to day at home.
For seniors, that may mean putting some time and effort into developing a dental hygiene strategy that works well for them. For example, a toothbrush with softer bristles, extra-strong dental mouthwash, and caring for your mouth 2 or 3 times a day may be in order.
Also a part of dental hygiene is following a proper diet without excessive sugar and that is high in vitamins and drinking plenty of water.
To learn more on how seniors can practice good oral hygiene, contact Ormond Beach Periodontics & Implant Dentistry in Central Florida today!