Patients of all ages need to pay attention to their oral health in order to promote overall wellness. Elderly oral health is no less important than oral health in younger populations, and in many ways it’s even more important.
However, older adults may face certain barriers to maintaining their oral health. It’s important to be aware of the resources available to help overcome those barriers, such as homebound care.
Reasons Why You Need To Protect Your Oral Health
There are many benefits to paying attention to your oral health. Here are just a few of them:
- Reduced risk of oral diseases: Getting sufficient dental care and practicing good oral hygiene habits at home will minimize the presence of bacteria that can cause cavities and gum disease.
- Improved nutrition: When your smile is in good shape, you can continue to eat a variety of nutritious foods. Older adults often have nutrient deficiencies, so it’s important for them to eat as many fresh fruits and vegetables as possible.
- Better overall health: Certain health conditions, such as heart disease and diabetes, appear to have a relationship with oral diseases like gum disease. Therefore, paying attention to your oral health boosts your overall well-being, too.
- Improved appearance: Of course, our smiles have a significant effect on our appearances. Older adults want to look good as much as younger ones do, so this is another benefit of protecting oral health.
Overcoming Oral Health Challenges Faced By Homebound Seniors
As is true in patients of any age, it’s important for older adults to see a dentist twice each year for exams and cleanings and practice good oral hygiene habits on a daily basis.
When patients are unable to leave their homes, they need to make alternate arrangements to get adequate professional dental care. Enter homebound care. There are dentists who will come to the patient’s home rather than ask the patient to take on the burden of getting themselves to the office.
There are other potential challenges unique to elderly oral health. For example, many people take more medications as they get older, increasing the likelihood of dry mouth as a side effect. When you don’t make enough saliva, oral disease-causing bacteria can proliferate on your teeth and gums.
To learn more about homebound care and how it can be valuable in preserving your oral health, call our office and speak to one of our knowledgeable staff members.