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Connecticut State Dental Association

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CT Dentists Encourage Older Patients to Seek Solutions to Common Oral Problems

During Older Americans Month this May, the Connecticut State Dental Association (CSDA) wishes to highlight proper oral health care for older adults.

During Older Americans Month this May, the Connecticut State Dental Association (CSDA) wishes to highlight proper oral health care for older adults.

“As we get older, it’s important to take time to ensure our teeth stay healthy with proper care,” said Dr. David Fried, CSDA President. “It’s natural to experience more oral health problems later in life, but there are ways to treat and even prevent them. Prevention is the key to maintaining oral health. Neglecting the less costly preventative care leads to more expensive and extensive dental care in the future. Nothing is more worthwhile than good daily homecare and professional cleanings in preventing oral disease.”  First and foremost, we recommend that senior adults visit the dentist for a checkup at least twice a year,” said Dr. Fried. During your visit, the dentist will conduct a regular exam, but will also check for more serious conditions, like oral cancer and gum disease, which may not show any external signs until advanced stages.

As people age, nerves within teeth become smaller, making teeth less sensitive to cavities and other problems. By the time any pain registers, it might already be too late for diagnosis and resolution of the problem. This is the reason why dentists recommend radiographs to aid in diagnosis. 

Cavities and decay on the surface of teeth are common in older adults. These can be prevented with daily care including regular brushing using fluoride toothpaste and interdental cleaning with floss or other products. As people age and take medications, dry mouth issues become prevalent, and dry mouth, plus sugar intake may cause cavities. 

It is also natural for teeth to weaken, as we age. Crowns, bridges, and implants are used to replace missing teeth or strengthen weakened ones. Crowns entirely cover the damaged tooth to enhance its appearance, shape, alignment and strength. Bridges can replace one tooth, or “bridge” the gap between multiple teeth. They are attached to teeth or implants along the space of missing teeth. Dentures attached to implants can increase chewing efficiency and aid in digestion. 

“By being proactive and adapting your daily routine to account for potential aging issues, teeth can last a lifetime. Find a dentist you can trust and enlist to be your partner in achieving optimal good oral health,” concluded Dr. Fried

To find a dentist near you visit: www.csda.com

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