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Guest Blog: Everything You Need to Know About Tooth Discoloration in Seniors

A perfect smile with pearly teeth can be a real confidence booster. However, as you age, you might experience teeth discoloration. Therefore, it becomes important to understand what causes the discoloration of teeth in the elderly and what you can do about it.

Tooth Discoloration in Seniors

Teeth naturally are not perfectly white, and the color may vary from person to person. It ranges typically from white gray to light yellow in hue. However, in rare cases, it may be a bit more yellow or brownish despite good dental health. This visible color is of tooth enamel. It is the hard substance that protects the underlying delicate tissue of the tooth.

Enamel is the hardest substance in the body and shields the teeth. The purpose of enamel is to protect the surface of the teeth from erosion or stains. It further defends the teeth from sensitivity caused by very hot or cold foods and drinks.

As you age, the outer layer of the enamel on your teeth gets worn out to reveal the natural yellow color of dentin. Since the enamel does not have living cells, once damaged, it cannot grow back. Other than aging, there are other factors that contribute to tooth discoloration in seniors. Here are some of them:

1. Disease and medication
A number of diseases and treatments, including procedures like chemotherapy and radiation, can affect the teeth color. In addition, infections may also cause the natural teeth color to fade. Medications like tetracycline, doxycycline, antihistamines, and drugs for hypertension are also known to cause teeth discoloration.
2. Poor dental hygiene
Not brushing the teeth properly and skipping flossing can lead to yellow teeth as it will allow plaque to develop.
3. Foods, drinks, and tobacco
Certain foods and drinks like coffee, tea, wine, fruits, and vegetables can lead to teeth stains.
4. Excessive fluoride
Use of excessive fluoride, often found in teeth whitening products like toothpaste or mouthwash can cause yellowing of teeth.
5. Genes
Genetics can also be a major factor. Some people have more yellow tooth color than others, while others have thinner enamel.

How to treat discoloration in old age

Enamel, once destroyed, cannot be repaired. Therefore, the first thing you can practice is prevention. Nevertheless, teeth discoloration with age is unpreventable. Some of the treatments to get rid of teeth stains are mentioned below.
– Practice good dental hygiene and brush your teeth properly.
– Avoid foods or drinks that may cause staining.
– You may consult your dentist and consider bondings or veneers to hide or remove yellow teeth.
– Your dentist may be able to help you through teeth whitening procedures.
– Over-the-counter whitening agents can be the saviors in some cases.

Author Bio: Dr. Anu Isaac, DMD, runs a successful dental practice in Salem, MA. As the founder of Coral Dental Care, she is dedicated to creating healthy, beautiful smiles for her patients and also to educating dental and non-dental community with her engaging articles on all things related to oral health, recent dental innovations, and latest treatment modalities.

By |2019-12-02T13:35:36-05:00December 2nd, 2019|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: Everything You Need to Know About Tooth Discoloration in Seniors

Dental Care Tips for the Elderly People of Age 55+

 

1. Introduction to Oral Health

An increase in education about oral health, as well as better access to toothbrushes, fluoride toothpaste and floss, have led to more older adults retaining their original teeth. However, as you age, your teeth and gums require a little extra attention. Read on to learn about how to care for your teeth after 55.

2. Oral Health Challenges in Aged People

– Dry mouth
Hormonal changes and many medications contribute to reduced saliva production resulting in dry mouth. Dry mouth can increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease by allowing bacteria to breed more easily and can also lead to difficulty speaking and eating, fungal infections and problems wearing dentures.

– Attrition
Attrition refers to general wear and tear on teeth that occurs as you age. Years of chewing and grinding wears down tooth enamel increasing the risk of cavities.

– Diseases
Older adults over the age of 55 years old have an increased risk of developing thrush, a fungal infection of the mouth, as well as oral cancers.

– Root Decay
Gums can recede as you age exposing the base of the tooth to bacteria which can decay your teeth from the roots.

3. Common Conditions Found in Aged of 55+

Even with a good oral care routine, adults over the age of 55 years old have an increased risk of developing some problems with their teeth and gums. Some common conditions include:

• Darkened teeth which is often due to enamel erosion and changes in the dentine inside the teeth, but can also be caused by regular consumption of dark foods and beverages.
• A reduced sense of taste which may be due to the side effects of some medications but can also be caused by dentures.
• Gum disease which is most often caused by plaque build-up but can also be caused by cancer, anaemia and diabetes.
• Misaligned jawbone as a result of tooth extraction or loss without replacing the missing teeth which lets remaining teeth drift.

4. What Can You Do to Maintain Your Oral Health?

To keep your natural teeth strong and bright for many years to come, there are several ways you can protect your teeth and gums.

– Increase Fluoride
Fluoride is present in most drinking water and in dental products like toothpaste and mouthwash. Increasing your use of fluoride can help to protect your teeth from cavities by helping to remineralise your teeth after acid wear.

– Eliminate Tobacco Chewing
Tobacco chewing has been linked with several negative oral health issues including cavities and discolouration. But quitting tobacco can be a challenge. Talk to your doctor about resources to help you quit and make an appointment with your dentist in Southend for a tooth whitening treatment for a brighter smile.

– Increase Oral Hydration
Staying hydrated is a great way to combat dry mouth as a result of medication. Keep a water bottle close by and sip throughout the day. You can also improve your oral hydration by chewing sugarless gum and limiting your intake of alcohol.

– Antibacterial Wash
Improve your oral health by reducing the build-up of plaque with antibacterial wash. Swish a small amount of alcohol-free mouthwash in your mouth after brushing at night.

5. Conclusion

With proper oral care your teeth and gums will last your lifetime but take extra care of your teeth after the age of 55. If you interested in learning more about how your oral health changes as you age, call your local dentist for an appointment.

Author bio:
Located on the Southchurch Road, Parmar Dental is a multi-award winning
Southend Orthodontics offering high standard and quality dental treatments that
patients always expect. Parmar Dental provides dental care in a very relaxed and
tranquil environment, where each visit would be a unique experience for their
patients.

By |2019-08-14T10:45:37-05:00August 15th, 2019|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Dental Care Tips for the Elderly People of Age 55+