Posted on 12/20/2016 by Implant & Periodontal Associates NW
As you get older, your body changes. This includes changes in your oral health. As you get older, there are several things that you should be on the lookout for with your gums.
Saliva is the body's natural defense against bacteria. It washes away food particles and bacteria that may be lingering on your teeth and kills the bacteria in the process. As you get older, you become more susceptible to dry mouth. Without sufficient saliva, your mouth becomes a breeding ground for all kinds of bacteria. Dry mouth can also be a side effect of many medications. Be sure to drink plenty of water to aid in salivary flow.
Gum disease is an infection of the gums that starts off small, practically undetectable, but can progress to affect the teeth and jawbone. Dry mouth can be a factor in gum disease, as it aids in the growth of bacteria. Gum disease can cause gum recession, damage to the jawbone and tooth loss. Infection can even enter the bloodstream and spread throughout the rest of the body. For this reason, proper oral hygiene and regular dental visits, at least twice a year, are critical.
Your gums recede naturally as you age. Recession exposes more of your tooth, including the root, which can lead to sensitivity. It can make your teeth less stable. It also makes you more susceptible to tooth decay and gum disease.
Oral cancer can affect all different parts of your mouth - your lips, cheeks, tongue, entrance to the throat and your gums. Your chances of developing oral cancer increase with age. Other factors play a major role in its development, including tobacco use and excessive alcohol use. Oral cancer can be fatal, and therefore early detection and treatment is important. Regular visits to the dentist can help to detect it.
As you get older, your body becomes more susceptible to health problems, even your mouth. Make sure to keep proper oral hygiene a part of your routine and always visit your dentist regularly to ensure that your mouth stays healthy.