Dental Care of Senior Citizens by Value Smiles, Lithia Springs Dentist
By 2030, it’s projected that one in 5 adults will be aged 65 or older. With the aging patients comes the unique challenges our senior citizens face.
Now the aging population has most teeth than before because of
1. Preventive care is getting better.
2. Dental insurance provided by the work helped them to maintain good oral care.
3. More senior citizens are choosing treatments to save the teeth.
4. The attitude of inevitability of tooth loss has been shifted.
5. Advances in dental care enabling people to keep teeth throughout their life time.
Dentists at Value Smiles have seen a trend that seniors are not only thinking about saving the teeth but also want brighter and whiter teeth. Now a days it is very common to see a 65-year-old not wearing any Dentures.
DENTAL CHALLENGES OF AGING PATIENTS/ SENIOR CITIZENS
As patients age, they are becoming medically more complex. The dentists in our Lithia Springs Dental office has the knowledge and expertise in managing these patients.
Our dentists understand that older patients have issues with comorbidity and polypharmacy.
The most common disease we see in adult population are high blood pressure, depression, diabetes and arthritis.
The medication taken for these conditions can affect their oral health.
LACK OF DENTAL INSURANCE
As senior citizens retire they lose the dental insurance and hence don’t see the dentist regularly. But senior adults are the ones who need to visit the dentist more often than any other.
Medicare doesn’t cover dental care unfortunately and most of the senior citizens don’t know that Medicare don’t cover dental problems.
Value Smiles offers all senior citizens a Membership Plan which will save them 30-40% off regular prices.
In Georgia, Medicaid pay for limited dental services for older adults. Our well trained staff in Lithia Springs dental office can offer our membership plan to older patients who really need help.
Most likely older adults have heavily restored teeth which needs good oral hygiene but it is compromised by the arthritic changes in their hands.
Patients with Arthritis cannot hold their brush properly or floss effectively. This necessitate frequent cleanings and dental exams.
Lack of Transportation is one of the biggest obstacle for getting dental care for adults who live in a nursing home.
So the dentists at Value Smiles consider all these things when determining dental care for our senior patients.
At Value Smiles we try to understand the level of understanding of the older patient so that we can involve their children or spouses or legal guardian with treatment plan and treatment consent.
COMMON ORAL CONDITIONS ASSOCIATED WITH OLDER ADULTS
The dentists at Value Smiles are aware of the conditions that are associated with taking multiple medications. Here are some most common oral conditions
Dry Mouth also called as Xerostomia. Statistics showed that about 30 percent of patients aged 65 years or older and 40 percent of patients age 80 has dry Mouth. This is the most common oral health issue in senior citizens. Dry Mouth can cause Mucositis, Inflammation of the mouth, dental decay/ tooth decay, cracked lips and fissures on the tongue.
Root Decay: Half of the elderly patients aged 75 or older, has at least one tooth got affected with root Decay.
Why elderly patients get root Decay?
Older adults have receded gums exposing the softer root which is prone for Decay and also due to medication induced dry Mouth.
GUM DISEASE/ PERIODONTAL DISEASE: Periodontal disease affects older adult’s more than young adults.
Other factors affecting the gum health are smoking, lower income and less education. It is shown that African American and Hispanic seniors are more likely to have periodontal disease.
ORAL INFECTIONS: CANDIDIASIS: A significant percentage of older adults has oral infections including candidiasis.
Our dentists at Value Smiles do a comprehensive oral examination to rule out any infections and do oral cancer screening.
COMMUNICATION WITH OLDER ADULTS
Our Lithia Springs dentists do these things for clear communication with older adults like
1. Talking to patient standing in front of the patient.
2. Keeping a constant eye contact with the patient.
3. Not wearing eye wear and masks when talking.
4. Cutting out external noises like TV, Radio and suction units.
5. Explaining the treatments with visual models and videos
6. Speaking clearly but not loudly.
7. Repeating the sentences again as needed.
8. Written treatment plans typed in a bigger font for clear vision
9. Using every day words and avoiding dental terms
10. Last but not the least, treating the older adults with respect and dignity.
American Dental Association Link for more info about Dentures
Academy Of General Dentistry link about Dentures
Please contact us at 770-489-9141 or visit us at WWW.MYVALUESMILES.COM for any further information. We have same day appointments in most situations. We accept most major dental insurances. We are conveniently located at 2635 Lee Road, Suite C4, Lithia Springs, GA-30122. We are in the Publix plaza at the intersection of Fairburn Road and Lee Road. Value Smiles provide Affordable Dental Care with Excellent Customer Service to patients in Lithia Springs, Douglasville, Austell, Mableton, Powder Springs and surrounding areas.