HealthLeader

An Online Wellness Magazine produced by The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth)

Everlasting Smiles

Prevention is essential for maintaining good oral health in seniors

Everlasting Smiles

The aging process manifests itself in myriad outwardly visible ways. From receding hairlines to sagging skin, aging comes with side effects that are impossible to ignore. But for many seniors, one of the most significant signs of aging can take place virtually out of sight — until it’s too late to ignore.

Declining oral health is a common malady afflicting those age 65 and above, but in terms of public awareness it lags well behind other health issues that generally affect the elderly population, such as arthritis or dementia. Left untreated, oral health conditions like periodontal disease, tooth decay and dry mouth can play a huge role in diminishing the quality of life. The slide toward poor oral health for many seniors is a gradual one marked by decreased quality of life and tooth loss.

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