Atkins & Anderson DDS Blog


How to Maintain Your Oral Health as You Age

Your oral health affects more than just your teeth and gums. That’s why taking care of your teeth is crucial – especially as you age and your immune system weakens.

Here are 5 tips on how to maintain a healthy mouth as you get older.

1. Brush and Floss Daily

You already know the most important basics – brush and floss twice a day! But as you age, your teeth and gums undergo quite a bit of normal wear and tear. Plaque builds up more quickly and is more difficult to get rid of after age 50.

Here’s what we recommend for most older adults:

  • Use a soft bristle brush only – Whether you use a traditional or electric toothbrush, always use a soft bristle brush and brush gently.
  • Use an electric toothbrush – An electric toothbrush does a better job cleaning difficult-to-reach places. It also has a built-in timer to ensure you brush the proper amount of time. Plus, an electric toothbrush is easier to hold, which helps if you have joint pain or arthritis.
  • Floss after every meal – Consistent flossing is critical since plaque builds up more quickly on older teeth. Whenever possible, floss after every meal.
  • Switch to a water or hand-held flosser – If maneuvering floss around every tooth is difficult, try switching to a water or hand-held flosser to make this task easier and less damaging to your gums.

Read More: Is Flossing Really Necessary?


2. Address Dry Mouth (Xerostomia)

Many well-known prescription medications can cause dry mouth. Not only is it annoying, but persistent dry mouth increases the risk of cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease.

If you experience dry mouth, talk to your dentist. They can recommend products that help limit tooth decay and keep your mouth healthy.


3. Consider Dental Implants

Implants may be better than removable dentures if you need to replace any teeth. They are permanent, safe, and natural-looking. Implants are also better for chewing and help prevent jaw joint problems.  

If you have dentures, it’s crucial to care for them properly. They must be cleaned daily with denture products. It’s also essential to keep your dentures out of your mouth at least 4 hours a day (while you sleep is the perfect time).

Read More: Be Confident About Dental Implants


4. Make Healthy Food and Drink Choices

Regardless of age, what you eat and drink impacts your oral health. Choose a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains – and low in processed and refined sugars.

Drinking too many sugary drinks increases your mouth’s acidity, creating cavities, and destroying your tooth enamel. So instead of soda, drink lots of water! Water helps rinse away and dilute acids in your mouth – and it’s a natural deterrent for dry mouth.

Read More: How What You Drink Affects Your Teeth


5. Maintain Routine Dental Appointments

Practicing good oral hygiene at home is essential, but regular dental visits are crucial – especially as you age. These check-ups are more than routine cleaning – they’re also about preventative care and early detection of potential problems.

Read More: Overcoming Dental Anxiety: 5 Tips for a Stress-Free Dental Visit


Age Doesn’t Define Your Smile

It’s never too late to take control of your oral health. At Atkins & Anderson DDS in Bryan/College Station, we offer general, restorative, and cosmetic dentistry for people of all ages. We specialize in providing high-quality, personalized care in a relaxed style so you feel comfortable. Contact us today and let us help you maintain your oral health as you age.


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