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Providing dental care to U.S. senior citizens
Updated: 8/19/2011 5:00:44 PM
 

Providing dental care to U.S. senior citizens Men and women who are 65 or older are known as the largest-growing age demographic group in the U.S. At the present time, only about 20 percent of senior citizens seek out dental health care on a regular basis, according to RDH magazine.

The news source reports that oral health issues and conditions among the 65-and-older age group are a significant concern to professional dental care practitioners. A considerable number of individuals at this age suffer from advanced periodontal disease, which is more difficult to treat in older patients.

Additionally, maintaining proper dental hygiene and health is seen as important for geriatric men and women because of the medications regularly taken by these individuals, for any number of non-oral health issues. Many of these drugs have the potential to adversely affect salivary flow or other healthy functions of the mouth.

To reduce the likelihood of such severe complications during retirement years, individuals can begin bringing the state of their oral health to an optimal level as young adults or even children, particularly those consuming excess sugar or with genetic predisposition to dental problems.

The National Association of Dental and Craniofacial Research states that about 17 percent of seniors have periodontal disease, and that the condition is moderate or severe in nearly 11 percent of these individuals.

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