Older Americans and Care Takers Encouraged to Stay Engaged When It Comes to Oral Health
During May, the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) is joining other organizations to recognize National Older Americans month organized by the Administration for Community Living. Good oral health is important at any age, and the organization’s members want to stress that older people and their caregivers must maintain regular dental care.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) suggests that by the year 2050 there will be an estimated 48 million Americans aged 65 or over. The CDC has also identified that of Americans aged 60 years and older, about 25 percent no longer have their natural teeth. A constant for studies conducted to evaluate the health of seniors show that many older Americans will not maintain regular visits to the dentist after retirement. Some studies conclude that older Americans begin to neglect their oral health as a result of limited or expired dental benefits. Additional reasons include the decrease or elimination of income, becoming non-transient and not able to make it to their regular appointments.
Here are a few recommendations to assist older Americans to become or remain engaged in their oral health:
- Talk with your dentist about proper oral health.
- Keep dentures clean.
- Limit the amount of sugary beverages or snacks.
- Keep regular dental appointments.
- Research and sign up for dental payment plans.
Diminishing health and fiscal resources may make maintaining oral care difficult as people age. AGD and its members are available to assist people of any age with good oral health. To find an general dentist, go to https://www.agd.org/patient-resources/find-an-agd-dentist.