As you age, you have to learn how to take care of yourself and your teeth to prevent gingivitis and periodontal disease. Studies show that more than one in four adults have lost all of their teeth by age 65. In addition to this, 50 percent of adults age 55 or older have gingivitis. One of the main reasons why your chances of getting gingivitis increase when you are older is because your gum line will start to recede. As the gums recede, it will expose the root of your tooth and increase your chances of bacteria making its way into the gums. As you can imagine, dental plaque control is very important. Here are some tips on how to prevent gum problems like gingivitis in older adulthood and keep your teeth for your entire lifetime.
Brush At Least 2 Times a Day For 2 Minutes
When you are older, you need to get even more serious about your brushing routine. Studies show that you can reduce plaque deposits by as much as 70 percent if you brush for at least 1 minute before you even use toothpaste. Make sure you are angling your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle so you can scrub under your gums. When you get rid of the plaque under your gums, you reduce your chances of getting gingivitis in older adulthood.
Flossing is Important to Prevent Gum Disease
In later adulthood, you really need to dedicate your time to flossing after every single meal. Because your gums are receding, it is easier for food particles to get stuck and turn into bacteria. You can invest in a Proxbrush, a floss pick, or standard floss to get the food out from between the gaps in your teeth.
Do Not Forget the Importance of Scheduling Checkups with Your Dentist
As you age, you will need to visit your dentist more often. If you get anxiety when you are visiting the dentist, you are going to have to find a dentist that is fun. If the dentist is friendly and humorous, you are more likely to keep your appointments. Schedule cleanings at least once every four months once you hit 55. The cleanings are essential to get rid of the plaque that you just cannot hit with your toothbrush or with floss. In some cases, you may need to schedule scaling appointments with a dental hygienist to get rid of the plaque and tartar that has been living under your gums.
If you do not get rid of all of the plaque that is sitting on and under your gum line, it can lead to bone loss and tooth loss. As you can see, dental plaque control is extremely important when you are in late adulthood. If you want to be proud of your smile and you do not want to feel like you have to get dentures just to gain your confidence back, improve your oral hygiene habits and you will be proud to say you have all of your adult teeth even in retirement.