This particular blog article is exactly that and should be treated as such. If you are suffering from any oral health issues we would encourage you to visit your local dentist for a professional opinion.
Oral health is a fairly good indicator of overall health & well-being, and quality of life.
The impact of poor quality oral health amongst our elderly cannot be overlooked or underestimated whatsoever.
Issues such as untreated abscesses, dirt-flecked dentures, gum disease and tooth decay are but a few examples of what can occur when the teeth, gums and mouths of our elderly are not taken care of.
Furthermore, a chronic oral infection can also complicate the overall medical management of diabetes, chronic heart failure and various other respiratory diseases, whilst also leading to more deadly conditions such as pneumonia and malnutrition.
The elderly are very much at a high risk of developing dental disease which will almost certainly affect their ability to eat and socialise, their level of comfort and compromise their health in general.
Symptoms of Poor Oral Health
- Indigestion through not chewing food enough
- Difficulty chewing food
- Red & swollen gums
- Brittle & loose teeth
There are a number of steps that an elderly person can take to ensure good oral health and prevent any issues. These include:
- Routinely brush, floss and use mouthwash to prevent gum disease
- Make regular trips – perhaps twice a year – to the dentist for routine checks
- Changing the toothbrush regularly or cleaning dentures correctly and on a regular basis
- Avoid foods that are high in trans or saturated fats. Following a healthy diet of fresh fruit and vegetables as well as plenty of fibre.
- Not smoking. Smokers will have a higher risk of developing gum problems and oral cancer. There are also risks of complications after a tooth has been extracted and oral or gum surgery increases.
If you expect an elderly family member or someone you know that may have issues with their teeth and/or their gums, please encourage them to visit a dentist as soon as they can.
Any oral health issues can be confirmed through a physical examination of their mouth and possible x-rays.
Elderly people may exhibit increased sensitivity to any drugs used in dental procedures, which includes analgesics and local anaesthetics.
At Accent Home Care, we very much believe that our elderly in the community deserve to live a comfortable life that is free of oral pain or pain in general.