For those in their later years of living, dental health becomes even more vital to maintain and appreciate. Baby boomers are between the ages of 52-70 years old, and one thing on their minds as they approach retirement status, is how much to invest in their teeth, their smile, and their overall self-care. The older generation can suffer from yellowing teeth, chipped or decayed teeth from excessive usage over the years, and gum disease from other underlying issues or disease. There is a plethora of problems that could creep up that need to be addressed.
What Are the Main Issues to Look For?
As the notion of retiring or joining AARP enters a person’s life, the shock of aging is prevalent. Choosing to embrace these years rather than fear them, will make or break what type of dental health factors influence your daily living. Breaking down the main issues and identifying what to look for as an over-50 year old can include:
- How much can I afford?
- What are my options based on my dental insurance coverage?
- Which treatment will work best to incorporate into my lifestyle?
- Are my gums and jawbone able to withstand dental implants?
- Will my new smile be attractive enough to conduct a normal regimen that I’ve been accustomed to?
- How will the new changes to my teeth affect my relationships and work?
Considering all of the above, it’s wise for a baby boomer to do their research and explore which dental treatment would coincide with their current health. Because dental health stems from possible avoidance of the onset of disease or other illnesses, an over 50-year old patient needs to assess and go from there.
Options to Keep Dental Health in Check
There are several dental procedures and maintenance protocol to help continue an active life as an evolved baby boomer. Here are the available dental treatments that would be of benefit:
- Dental Implants – This procedure has become the standard for missing teeth replacement. Dental implants are typically inserted in-office and are a lifelong investment that will give you confidence beyond measure. After placement, the new tooth (or teeth) resemble your natural teeth and returning to normal activities is guaranteed. These artificial teeth require three parts: the implant, the abutment, and the crown. Dental implants provide a long-term solution for chronic dental problems, and allow the patient to never worry about smiling freely.
- Dentures – This prosthetic device is designed to replace missing teeth. They are supported by surrounding hard and soft tissues of the oral cavity. The conventional dentures are removable and the most popular. Many older patients will rely on dentures to restore their smile due to their affordability and durability.
- Bridges – Dental bridges literally bridge the gap created by one or several missing teeth. A bridge is made up of two or more crowns which are placed on either side of the gap (referred to as the abutment teeth) with a false tooth in between. Dental bridges also help maintain the shape of the face and restore the patient’s smile and ability to properly chew and speak. A bridge installation takes two visits to ensure a proper fit for permanency.
- Crowns – Referred to as a dental cap, this type of restoration completely caps or encircles a tooth. Crowns are used to improve the strength or appearance of the teeth, and while arguably beneficial to dental health, the procedure can be relatively expensive if more than one restoration is needed.
Your oral health reflects your overall health. What’s going on in your mouth mirrors the condition of your body as a whole. Baby boomers are especially vulnerable to developing conditions which could impact their overall health as symptoms can manifest in the mouth, making dentists even more vital in diagnosing diseases.
Regular dental visits will help keep your teeth and mouth in tiptop shape, and also allow for your dentist to observe developments that may signal other health issues. Dr. Chuck Majors will be able to pinpoint any oral problems, poor nutrition and hygiene, or improper jaw alignment through a thorough dental exam. Providing him with a complete medical history and informing his staff of any new developments is sure to send you on the road to quality health. Contact his office in Bryan, TX to take your dental health to a brighter place.