Oral health care for the elderly

Author: Dr. Nhan Tam View: 568
With or without teeth, the elderly should also visit the dentist periodically every 3-6 months to detect and treat the dental disease if exist. Mouth and teeth is the gateway to the digestive tract, which, if neglected, can affect overall health. In particular, gum disease in the elderly can lead to oral mucosal cancer.

Elderly people should pay more attention to dental health

For oral care, the elderly should note the following:

Proper nutrition

Fresh vegetables and fruits are vitamin sources for the body in general, for teeth and gums in particular. They also clean the teeth after eating. Fruit should be eaten instead of sweet pastries (chewy, sticky, easy to stick and cause tooth decay). Only eat sweet pastries at the main meal and brush your teeth right after. The best time to eat fresh fruit is one hour before the main meal, as they are raw foods. Eating raw food before eating cooked foods will help to avoid white blood cells elevation and protect the immune system. The elderly usually eat less food but have more meals.

After each meal, rinse and brush the teeth immediately, so not to leave food on the teeth and gums, enabling bacteria in the mouth to ferment, creating acid that destroys tooth enamel, resulting in tooth decay. Eat plenty of protein (meat, eggs, shrimp, crab, milk, tofu), fats (vegetable oil, avoid fat and animal viscera), vitamins (fruit), mineral salts.

Prevention of periodontal disease

Bacterial plaque (caused by leftover food, tobacco) is a cause of periodontal disease. If teeth are not carefully brushed, plaque will gradually thicken and causes gingivitis. The first symptom of periodontitis is tartar at the base of the teeth, stimulating gingivitis. Although intact, the surrounding tissues and membranes of the teeth (such as gums, bone, enamel, ligaments) are destroyed. Without firm support, teeth will slowly loosen and sparse; Patients will have symptoms such as swollen gums, pockets containing bacteria, bad breath. To prevent periodontitis, it is necessary to maintain oral hygiene, eat soft foods.

Replace lost teeth with denture

When loose teeth due to any reasons, the elderly should visit the dentist for dental examination and restoration after 1 month. If left untreated, the teeth will shift to cover the lost teeth area which disorganizes the bite. Once you have a denture, keep it clean, brush your denture every day like real teeth. For removable denture, it should be taken off when resting or sleeping, so the mucous membrane in the denture is airy, easy blood circulation. Removed denture should be cleaned, soak in a glass of cooled water with a lid.

Dr. Bui Thi Xuan Phuong, Health & Life