As you grow older, you may become increasingly concerned about your oral health. Many people of advanced age suffer from periodontal disease and eventually lose their teeth due to dental plaque.
The plaque that incites tooth decay also inflames the gingival tissues. Dental plaque is comprised of food particles and bacteria. The bacteria in the decay-causing substance consume the carbohydrate component of leftover debris in the mouth. As the microbes digest their food, they release acid that dissolves the enamel of the teeth and irritates the gums.
Additionally, the bacteria may infect the gums and even invade the jawbone, causing the bone tissue to shrink from the teeth. As the teeth become loose in their sockets, they may fall out.
Even though tooth loss among older people is common, it is not inevitable. Here are a few dental measures that you can take to preserve your teeth.
Use Antibacterial Mouth Rinses
Brushing and flossing your teeth regularly can help remove plaque and particles of food from the teeth. However, you may not clean the teeth as thoroughly as you need to if your brushing sessions are too brief or your teeth are too closely set. Thus, an antibacterial rinse can be helpful.
Antibacterial mouth rinses include antimicrobial agents that kill harmful oral microbes. These germ-killing mouthwashes may include chlorhexidine or alcohol.
Some dentists prefer that their patients avoid alcohol-based rinses to lessen the risk of drying out the oral tissues. People with dry mouth often have an increased incidence of decay and gum disease because of the reduction in the amount of saliva that is needed to wash away bacteria and help dilute oral acids.
Attend Routine Dental Appointments
Routine dental examinations and scalings may seem unimportant. However, during the examinations, the dentist can find early indications of oral health problems. Early treatment of dental issues can prevent the progression of the conditions that may result in tooth loss. Additionally, regular dental scalings help lessen the amount of tartar buildup.
Tartar is plaque that has been left in place long enough to harden. Tartar is so hard that it cannot be removed by a toothbrush or floss. Instead, it must be scraped from the dental surfaces. This scraping process is called scaling.
Due to the porous nature of the tartar, the material provides more surface area for the accumulation of additional plaque and bacteria. Its removal helps the mouth remain cleaner and healthier.
To learn more ways to maintain your oral health, schedule a consultation with a dental clinic in your local area, like Apollo Dental Center.