It may not come as a surprise that maintaining excellent oral health habits over the entire course of one’s life will pay off as one ages. Nevertheless, it’s important to understand how our mouths age and how we can prevent conditions often associated with aging.
As we age, nerves inside our teeth shrink and thus become more susceptible to health issues. Dental health is not something to take lightly, at any stage in life. Staying on top of your oral health will greatly help to prevent issues in the future, including teeth loss which is often associated with aging. (That’s right – teeth loss can be avoided, as can several other major dental problems.)
Maintaining a regular oral care routines matters.
This includes daily brushing and flossing, as well as regular visits (bi-annual is suggested in most cases) to the dentist. Note, this is important for caregivers to keep in mind. If you have taken charge of making sure another’s health needs are met, do not forget about oral health needs.
In addition, fluoride use is important in protecting teeth from decay. Be sure that toothpaste contains fluoride, and drinking fluoridated water (try tap water) is yet another way to be sure you (and your loved ones) are getting the proper fluoride intake.
Harmful substances also affect your teeth overtime.
Any form of tobacco, for instance, should be avoided. In fact, in addition to numerous other major health effects, compared to non-smokers, smokers are seven times for likely to develop periodontal disease. Alcohol, while not as toxic as tobacco, should be limited. Furthermore, combined intake of tobacco and alcohol increases the risk of developing oral and throat cancers.
Also, be aware of any sudden changes in one’s taste or smell.
This is likely not simply a result of aging—Medical and dental professionals should be consulted if such a situation arises.
As you can see, oral health should not be considered secondary. Keeping this aspect of your health a priority throughout your life can help to prevent many issues that are often associated with aging.