Archive for June 2013
A lot of seniors we see neglect their health (especially their dental health) worse than children and teenagers. It is sad.
As we age pain management is very difficult. Our bodies don't recover well. We may be on multiple medications that interfere with other medications and with our body's natural healing abilities. We have developed allergies and sensitivities that we didn't have when we were younger.
You don't want to suffer the pain of dental infections. And dental infections -- even those that are not yet painful will affect your overall health. Our mouth is full of bacteria and once the tissues become inflammed, the blood vessels in our mouth are permeable to the bacteria. Once in the blood, the bacteria are able to spread throughout our body.
The best advice is that before retirement have all the problems in your mouth fixed. It may cost a lot in dollars but it will save you future dollars at a time when it money will be a bigger factor in your life and it will save you a lot of pain and health problems.
Be regular with your check ups-- 3 months is a magic number for keeping down destruction by bacteria. Daily use of products such as Perio Protect (hydrogen peroxide gel in special trays) will do so much good for yoiur health. I cannot go without my daily application.
Ask us for more advice. Your hygienist is an excellent source of information.
Hygiene appointments are one of the best things you can do for your overall health. If you have any areas of disease (and over 90% of adults do), the hygienist can reach spots you can't with the brush, floss or mouth rinses. The goal is to reduce bacteria and inflammation. Both are major causes not only of destruction of tissue in the mouth but also of our body. The hygienist can help you live healthier. And in offices such as ours we have added the use of lasers for those with high levels of destructive bacteria. The results are amazing. The procedure is very comfortable.
Prior to any surgery we recommend a good dental cleaning within 90 days of the surgery. 3 months seems to be the critical period of time to keep the bacteria down to low enough levels to not destroy tissue.
This same principle applies to the frequency you may require for regular hygiene visits. 3 months will be recommended if you have moderate to advanced gum disease. It may be even more important if you've spent a lot of money over the years on fixing teeth. Protect your investment.
For the healthy person, visits of 6 to 12 months may be appropriate. Ask us what the best recare frequency is suited to you and do your best to maintain that frequency. It is in your best interest and will pay dividends as you age in both less need for dental care and healthier bodies.