Do you have arthritis in your hands and fingers, making it difficult to brush and floss as well as you used to? Are you missing one or more teeth, making it hard to enjoy your favorite foods?
These kinds of physical changes and medical conditions associated with later adulthood can affect the kind of dental care you need. At Jason L. Downey, DDS Dentistry in Las Vegas, we enjoy treating patients in all stages of their lives and understand the unique dental challenges of senior patients. Whether you are experiencing tooth sensitivity or have ill-fitting dentures, we can gently assess and treat all of your dental concerns and bring joy back to your smile.
Common Problems for Seniors
Did you know that neglecting even the most simple dental problems like a chipped tooth can put you at increased risk for infection, nerve damage, and tooth loss? That’s why it’s so important to talk with your dentist about any dental problems you might be having.
Here are some common problems we often see in patients over 60 years old:
- Tooth sensitivity
- Tooth decay
- Gum disease
- Mouth irritation related to dentures
- Tooth loss
- Bone loss
- Mouth, throat, and tongue cancer
Common Treatments for Seniors
Like dental care at any age, it all starts with the basics, including regular check-ups. We offer standard teeth cleanings and oral exams, as well as a comprehensive range of restorative treatments.
- Regular Check-Ups:You should visit your dentist twice a year for routine exams, including an annual oral exam to check for any signs of cancer. If your teeth are very sensitive, we will evaluate your gums and can recommend certain toothpastes and toothbrushes that will help reduce sensitivity. By seeing your dentist regularly, problems and concerns can be addressed early and more effectively.
- Fillings: Did you know your medication for high blood pressure or cholesterol could be contributing to frequent cavities? The reason is dry mouth, a common side effect of many medications that reduces the amount of saliva you produce. Without enough saliva, bacteria and plaque can build up in your mouth, leading to cavities. To prevent cavities, we might suggest using a special spray or mouthwash to treat dry mouth. To fix any existing cavities, we offer both gold and tooth-colored fillings.
- Dental Implants:If you are missing one or more teeth but have strong gums and bones,dental implants might be the ideal choice for you. An exciting development in restorative dentistry, this treatment replaces missing teeth with a lightweight titanium post that is surgically implanted into the jaw and topped with an artificial tooth for a natural-looking, permanent solution.
- Bridges: If you are not a good candidate for dental implants, we also offer dental bridges. The single piece is constructed of an artificial tooth between two crowns. The crowns are cemented to your existing teeth on each side of the gap, which fixes the bridge in place and restores your ability to eat and speak.
- Crowns: When a tooth is too damaged for a simple filling, your dentist might recommend a dental crown. A crown is used to “cap” the entire tooth and restore its shape, size, and strength. Acosmetic dentist will recommend a porcelain crown, which looks and functions just like natural teeth and can last for decades.
- Root Canals:If you have a severely infected tooth, you may need root canal therapy, which removes the infected pulp at the center of the tooth. Most people fear root canal treatment because it has a bad reputation, but with advanced technology at our office, your experience will be as painless and comfortable as possible.
- Full Mouth Reconstruction: In cases involving widespread tooth decay and advanced gum disease, a full mouth reconstruction might be needed to restore the health and appearance of your teeth and gums. Our restorative and cosmetic dentistry experts will ensure your result is both functional and exceptionally natural-looking.
Learn More about Dental Care for Seniors
We offer a variety of restorative dentistry options for senior patients. For more information about dental implants, bridges, or any other general or restorative procedure,contact Jason L. Downey, DDS Dentistry today.