Submitted by: Dr. Scott Reader, DMD, PA, Your Hometown Dentist, One Senior Place Resident Business

Advancing age puts many seniors at risk for a number of oral health problems. Darkened teeth, which are caused by changes in dentin and a lifetime of consuming stain-causing foods and beverages, are sometimes to blame. Dry mouth, a diminished sense of taste, root decay, gum disease, tooth loss, uneven jawbone and denture-induced stomatitis are the main aliments that seniors face for dental concerns.

Oral health of seniors is not solely determined by age and doesn’t always play a dominant role in determining oral health. Certain medical conditions, such as arthritis in the hands and fingers, may make brushing and flossing more difficult to perform. Also affecting dental health are certain drugs, which at times may cause a change in dental treatment.

Daily brushing and flossing of natural teeth is essential to keeping them in good oral health. Plaque can build up quickly on the teeth of seniors, especially if oral hygiene is neglected. To maintain good oral health it’s important for all individuals, regardless of age, to brush and floss at least twice a day, using fluoride-containing toothpaste. Visiting the dentist on a regular schedule for an exam, X-rays and cleaning are a must. According to the American dental Association, rinsing with an antibacterial mouth rinse can reduce plaque and gum disease.

Many cosmetic options such as teeth whitening, Lumineers and a Snap-On Smile, are suitable solutions for seniors to consider to enhance their smile and confidence into their golden years.

Suddenly your teeth become very sensitive to hot and cold, but relatively speaking your mouth is healthy, what is the culprit to this?  With age, receding gum tissue could be the cause of sensitivity.  Gum tissue tends to pull back away from the teeth, which causes them to become exposed.  Routinely, a soft tissue graph would be the recommended treatment.  Other suggestions may include using a fluoride mouth rinse, or switching to toothpaste made specifically for sensitive teeth.

Before seniors can consider braces they need to make sure they are dentally healthy.  A question seniors sometimes ponder about is whether or not they are too old for braces.  “Braces at my age, are you kidding me”, one of my patients asked me.  Guess what?  There is no age limit for correcting crooked teeth.  The mechanical process used to move teeth is the same at any age.  The benefits of orthodontic treatment are available to children as well as adults.  Anyone who wants to improve their appearance and bite, and has been approved dentally ready by their dentist or orthodontist can gain a confident, straight smile.

The main difference between treatment in adults and children is the treatment process may take a little longer for adults, as their bones are no longer growing.

Oral health and diet are directly and strongly correlated. There are several kinds of important minerals and vitamins that your teeth need to stay healthy and function. Certain foods, which are useful for developing muscles and bones, also keep your gums and teeth healthy. As a result, a balanced diet that consists of fresh fruits, leafy vegetables and other healthy nutrients is extremely important for your teeth.

Many of us prefer popping a supplement pill instead of eating healthy food. However, only natural food will provide you with maximum benefits. There are several natural components that can’t be substituted in the form of pills or health supplements. A healthy lifestyle and a balanced diet are the key to good oral health. Dietary measures must be taken since the initial days which will help you any oral health issues.

There are several things people may have to add or remove from your diet to ensure good oral health. Green leafy vegetables are good to consume for your diet because it contains vital components like vitamin A and B. These nutrients help keep the gums healthy and prevent diseases like overgrown and bleeding gums. Consuming whole cereals and pulses will fill you with Vitamin B. Vitamin B will prevent chapped & dry lips and also cure mouth and gum ulcers.

Another great source of foods to help maintain healthy teeth are citrus fruits such as oranges, gooseberries and limes. These fruits are a rich source of Vitamin C. Vitamin C boosts your immune systems and will keep your gum tissue and teeth healthy. Calcium is definitely required and beneficial for good oral health. Milk and yogurt are extremely rich in Calcium and helps build strong jaws and teeth. Similarly cheese is also rich in Calcium and Phosphate. Good levels of Calcium in the body will ensure that your tooth enamel is healthy and strong.

Consumption of meats and eggs will maintain the required levels of Magnesium and Zinc in your body. Foods such as poultry, fish and meats are extremely important as they also contain protein that is essential for gum developments. Mineral components such as legumes, soybeans, raisins, nuts, sea food, and molasses are extremely rich sources of Copper. Copper is a must for maintaining good dental health. Including bananas, figs, apricots, dates, raisins and tomatoes to your diet will remove any Potassium deficiencies. Foodstuffs rich in Zinc, such as sunflower seeds, spinach, mushrooms and liver, are very important for teeth and gum health. Including Iron rich foods such as spinach, iron rich cereals, whole grains, beef, and dry fruits will make your teeth healthy and strong. You can easily prevent any oral or dental problems with the usage of these simple dietary measures. Make sure your daily diet is full of nutrition and well balanced.


Dr. Scott Reader is a family and cosmetic dentist, specializing in Lumineers and the revolutionary Snap-On Smile.  His office is located at 7185 Murrell Road in Viera.  All seniors may schedule for a complimentary consultation by calling the office at 321-253-9588 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Reader.

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