Dental Health for Seniors
Regular dental care is essential for seniors.
- Regular dental care can help you keep your natural teeth longer.
- Replacing missing teeth or maintaining dentures directly affects health and diet.
- Proper dental function is important for maintaining a balanced diet with sufficient nutrients.
Dental health affects overall health.
- Deficiencies in such nutrients as protein and zinc decrease immune function and increase an elderly person's susceptibility to infection.
- Low vitamin C intake has been associated with decreased cognitive function and increased peripheral artery disease.
Everyday dental care is important for those with special needs.
- Daily brushing and flossing, regular dental visits and a balanced diet are especially important for those unable to care adequately for themselves.
- Alzheimer's, arthritis and other conditions can impair normal day-to-day activities like dental care.
- Caregivers may need to provide oral hygiene assistance to seniors or people with special needs.
Tips on dental hygiene assistance.
- Choose a time convenient for the person you are caring for.
- Proceed at a pace they are comfortable with.
- Support the person's head, and take special care to prevent choking or gagging if the head is lifted back.
- Discuss difficulties with your dentist, who can recommend aids such as a mouth prop to avoid injury to teeth.