Age and Dental Health

shutterstock_146241527As you grow older your teeth, gums and mouth also age. Here is how aging is related to oral health and how you can keep a healthy smile.

Acid Erosion

Like any machine, the more wear and tear you put on your body the less effectively it works! The biggest factor affecting the decay of your teeth as you get older is acid erosion.

This occurs from the over consumption of sugary and starchy foods. Carbohydrates from candy, soda, and even bread ferment in the mouth causing bacteria to produce acids. These acids can quickly eat away at the enamel of the teeth.

Candy that remains in the mouth, such as lollipops or suckers are the worst offenders when it comes to tooth decay. However, soda pop or any other sweet carbonated beverages can be equally as dangerous as the bubbles can increase acid levels within the mouth.

To delay this erosion try to avoid sugary foods including sports drinks. Additionally, the less frequently you snack the less damage occurs over time. Sugarless gum can be a great alternative to sugary gums which can really hurt your teeth and gums

Wear and Tear

As you age the mechanical functions of the mouth can experience a significant amount of wear and tear. Your teeth’s primary functions are to mash and grind your food for sustenance. In your early years your teeth are incredibly resilient to cracks and chips within the mouth.

While your teeth do not become brittle with age. The longer you are around the greater the chances that you will crack your tooth on a scurrilous popcorn kernel or some hard candy. If you have fillings or root canals your teeth are not as structurally sound as your natural teeth.

Additionally, as you age you can suffer from teeth grinding or as the medical community calls it bruxism.

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