Aging effects every area of the body, and the teeth and smile are not immune to its impact.
Here’s an insight into what happens to the teeth and jaw as we age, and how you can maintain your smile.
Enamel acts as a protective barrier on the teeth, defending them against acid, plaque and decay. As we age this enamel begins to thin. In some people this gives the appearance of discoloured teeth, but behind the scenes and more generally, thin enamel increases the likelihood of cavities and decay.
To maintain healthy tooth enamel, a diet featuring calcium rich foods is recommended. Meanwhile, it’s also advised to avoid food and drink that is high in sugar and acid, such as soda water and juices.
Maintaining a diligent dental hygiene routine is also important, along with regular visits to your dentist.
Wear and tear
A lifetime of chewing, speaking and perhaps even occasional teeth grinding takes its toll on your pearly whites. Combined with weakened enamel this may see your teeth more prone to cracking and chipping as you age.
Visiting your dentist at least once a year can hep identify any damaging wear and tear early. If you grind your teeth they may also recommend a mouthguard or muscle relaxant injections to minimise future damage.
Saliva works to flush the mouth of food remnants but also keeps the pH balance right within the mouth. As we age, saliva production decreases marginally, and this can be exacerbated further by some medications.
A change in the pH can raise acid levels in the mouth which affects the tooth enamel and leads to cavities and decay. Brush your teeth twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste and see your dentist as recommended.
Gum disease is a primary cause of preventable tooth loss in adults. It’s often linked to poor oral hygiene, smoking, disease and alcohol consumption.
However, a decrease in saliva can also play a role.
If your gums show signs of receding, consult your dentist. In many cases gum disease is manageable if caught early.
Research indicates the jaw gets smaller as we age and this can lead to crowded or overlapping teeth. Teeth that are very close together or overlap are often harder to keep clean, so more regular dental visits will be a requirement, along with an improved dental hygiene routine.
Of course, your smile isn’t just about teeth, gums and dental health, it’s also about your face, which is another area that alters as we age.
The habits of a lifetime, including how we speak and hold our face begin to leave their mark, sometimes resulting in fine or deep lines around the lips, eyes, and forehead.
Once taut skin begins to lose it elasticity impacting our overall appearance and the vivacity of our smile.
This is where procedures like cosmetic injectables can assist, relaxing the muscles that cause facial lines.
How we can help
Brite Dental is on hand to address the signs of aging including common issues that impact the teeth and gums as we age, and cosmetic injectables to reduce the signs of aging in the face.
About Brite Dental
Brite Dental is a community-focused dental practice, committed to ensuring you and your family receive the highest quality of care in a warm and professional environment.
Offering a full range of dental services ranging, from children’s dentistry through to high-end cosmetic dentistry, we are conveniently located in central Panania.
You can learn more about our dental services here, or contact us to book your next appointment.