Common Dental Concerns for Seniors

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In addition to tooth loss, the two primary oral health care problems for most adults as they grow older are tooth loss, dry mouth, and cavities. By making and keeping regular appointments with your dental professional, however, it is possible to maintain a bright smile and good overall oral health as you get older.


Common Dental Concerns for Seniors

As we grow older, it is not uncommon for our gums to shrink or recede back from our teeth. Unfortunately, this causes more of the surface of the tooth to be exposed, up to and including the roots. Even though your teeth are coated in a solid protective casing known as tooth enamel, the roots of your teeth lack this covering and are simply exposed. This makes your sensitive roots and their soft cementum vulnerable to an attack of plaque which will quickly lead to root decay. Any form of gum disease can also add the progression of the deterioration of your roots and the recession of your gums.

Senior citizens also frequently experience the growth of decay at the very edges of their fillings. Depending on the age of the person, they also might not have had any fluoride in their drinking water when they were growing up, so they likely have a few more fillings than other people will have when they get to be senior citizens. Fillings typically, over time, will fracture or weaken, creating the ideal tiny little places for bacteria to hide and go unnoticed that will eventually result in tooth decay and other serious oral health issues.

Dry Mouth

There are currently upwards of 500 different prescription medications that list dry mouth as a common potential side effect so, as a senior citizen currently taking one or more of these prescription medications,  your oral health could potentially be endangered with you even realizing the cause of it. 

The saliva this is naturally produced by your body works as a wash, rinsing away any food bits and particles, as well as rinsing away the acid that is created by the plaque on your teeth, so a decrease in the amount of salvia you are able to produce often results in an increased number of cavities. Popular medications people are often prescribed that can lead to dry mouth include medications that are prescribed for the treatment of asthma, allergies, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, anxiety, chronic pain, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease.

At McBride Dental, we want to help you and your family do everything possible to have and preserve healthy teeth and gums. By scheduling regular appointments with your California family dentist and practicing the oral care techniques we teach you, your whole family will easily maintain teeth that are healthy, strong, and effective.

The San Marcos offices of Dr. Michael McBride are staffed with reputable, professional San Diego dentists that are ready to address any concerns you may have regarding common dental procedures, as well as preventative, cosmetic, or restorative dentistry. We also provide sedation dentistry treatments as an option for our patients with severe dental anxiety.

It is our job to help you and your family establish healthy dental habits to make sure that your teeth will always be there when you need them and your smile will always look great.

If you would like to schedule an appointment with a San Marcos dentist, please give us a call at (760) 471-1003 and speak with a trained member of our dental staff today.


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