Are You Growing Older?
Contrary to popular belief we do not become less cavity prone as we grow older.. In reality we become more cavity prone as time passes. This is due to several reasons. First, our gums begin to recede with time, exposing the more cavity prone root surfaces of our teeth. Secondly, our salivary flow decreases. Saliva has several components that keep decay under control. It buffers the acids contained in our diets. Saliva also has antibodies that attack the bacteria responsible for decay. Older patients take many medications that can lead to dry mouth. Thirdly, the pits and grooves on our back teeth have been exposed to the bacteria and acids for longer period of time. These pits and grooves are not accessible to tooth brush cleaning. Their microscopic size is ideal for harboring cavity causing bacteria.
Don’t Ignore Your Dental Health.
This doesn’t mean you are doomed to loosing our teeth or being slammed with a lot of cavities. It just means we need to become more vigilant and prevention minded.. Regular, and possibly more frequent professional hygiene visits may be indicated. Fluoride treatment is a must for the older patient ( even if your insurance doesn’t cover it) Home care is equally as important. The use of an electric toothbrush, flossing, and using baking soda as your dentifrice and prescription fluoride gels all can be beneficial in reducing cavity occurrences.