3 Reasons Oral Hygiene Is So Important for The Elderly

Dentist and patient are looking at x-rays


Oral hygiene is  one of the things that play an incredibly important role in maintaining overall health.  As one ages, the body tends to naturally degenerate, thereby giving way to a wide variety of diseases and disorders.

Older people tend to be more susceptible to diseases and disorders as compared to the younger, healthier generations, which is why one must try to stay healthier to reduce the symptoms that arise and are affected by aging.


Oral Hygiene in Overall Health


Oral health and hygiene are one of the things that play an incredibly important role in maintaining overall health. Oral health has been shown to have a huge co-relating impact on the rest of the bodily functions, which is why there is so much emphasis on oral health for the elderly. However, this remains one of the things that most people overlook.

Things like chains for braces, proper dental checkups, and even teeth cleanings seem like something only people in the younger generations comply to, even though that shouldn’t be the case. To help you understand the importance of dental health in the elderly, we have listed a few reasons to help make our case.



Here are the three reasons Oral Health and Hygiene are Important As You Age:


Reason #1: The Periodontal-Systemic Connection


The Periodontal-Systemic Connection refers to the correlation between different kinds of gum disease and the impact that it has on the other organs of the body. When a person gets diagnosed with any gum disease, it can have an overall effect, leading to the emergence of other kinds of diseases and disorders.

Sometimes, this can cause the body to have problems generating insulin and sometimes can even emerge in the form of heart disease. As the saying goes, prevention is always better than cure.

It is important to employ preventive measures to be able to put the conditions that may arise at bay since sometimes, the conditions arising can be hard to treat in older patients. Regular dental checkups are always advised if you want to take a good preventive measure and keep different kinds of gum diseases and disorders at bay.



Reason #2: They Help You Save In the Long Run


The cost of healthcare is rising, and often, the pensions and monthly payments that the elderly receive might not be enough to sustain these growing medical costs. Getting regular health checkups might cost you a little bit at the moment, but they help keep bigger disorders at bay.

Things like getting timely cleanings, or braces might cost you to shell out a little bit of money, but they certainly are cheaper than having to go in for things like surgery, which can emerge out of poor dental health.

Even if the preventive measures might seem a bit too much of a hassle for you, getting timely treatment for things like gum infections and cavities is always essential, since it helps keep diseases that are affected by aging at bay.



Reason #3: Helps Them Lead Healthier and Happier Lives


The elderly are now living in their golden years, where they can sit back and enjoy the fruits of their labor. They can do the things that they have always wanted to do and can live their life the way that they want to.

But diseases that are caused as a result of gum-related infections and poor oral hygiene can put a damper on those plans. It can result them in having to live the rest of their life depended on machines and medicines, just to be able to perform their normal activities. All of this can easily be avoided through proper oral hygiene.

It is important to visit a dentist at least once every six months to make sure that the teeth and gums are healthy, and to allow the elders to live their life to the fullest!



Oral health is important for all people, but is especially important for the elderly.  Oral health can play a huge role in overall health.  The mouth is full of toxic germs and poor oral hygiene can allow these germs to enter the blood stream, which can cause illness or disease in other parts of the body.

This is important, as older adults may have compromised immune systems unable to protect their health from vicious microbes.

The easiest way to maintain overall health at any age, is to maintain good oral hygiene.

Author Bio

Ethel Huizar is a Health Promoter, Dental Hygienist and Co-Founder at HealthRow.net. Healthrow discusses oral health, healthy eating and all things health related. https://twitter.com/ethel_huizar

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