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It's important for people to remember that their mouth ages along with the rest of their body. Just as people have to do more to keep their body healthy as they get older, they also have to work harder to keep their natural teeth as the years go on. Recently, the Daily Herald published an article by Anthony Komaroff, M.D., a physician and professor at Harvard Medical School, who explained the importance of practicing proper dental health habits into old age.
The doctor pointed out that gums naturally recede with age and pull away from the base of the teeth. This can leave a gap between the teeth and the gums that is particularly vulnerable to infection and decay. Also, some of the common medications that elderly adults take can dry out the mouth. This symptom allows bacteria to over populated the mouth and cause decay, because there is less saliva to wash it away.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that nearly one-third of individuals over the age of 65 have untreated tooth decay. To combat all of these issues, it's important for elderly individuals to brush and floss regularly and visit the dentist often.
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