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5 Benefits of Routine Dental Cleanings After 40

5 Benefits of Routine Dental Cleanings After 40

We don’t have to tell you that your body changes with every passing birthday; you feel it in your achy muscles and stiff joints and see it in your wrinkled skin. Around age 40, your eyesight starts to slip, and you need readers or prescription lenses for the first time.

The aging process begins at the cellular level and causes your tissues to renew much more slowly. Your bones lose density and strength, and your immune system can’t fight off infections as easily as it did in your youth. These factors all affect your oral health, and we see the effects often at Dental Art of South Bay in Torrance, California.

Our team of experienced dental specialists treats patients of all ages, and we are passionate about helping people understand their changing needs at each life stage. If you’re 40 or over, you face different challenges than you did when you were a kid, so you may need to assess your current oral hygiene routine. 

This blog explains the unique dental issues most seniors (and pre-seniors) face and how regular professional cleanings can help you avoid them.

Reasons to pay attention to your oral health after 40

When you turn 40, you don’t feel old, but statistically, you’ve passed the halfway mark. Regardless of your bounding energy and ability to keep up with kids, your teeth are feeling their age, and without excellent at-home and professional care, you could face a number of challenges. Regular cleanings can help you prevent the problems of aging teeth and gums. 

1. Prevents gum disease

Gum disease affects a majority of seniors — two in three — aged 65 and above, as reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Referred to as periodontitis, severe gum disease can result in various health issues, including bleeding gums, difficulties in chewing, and tooth loss. You may not notice the symptoms of gum disease until the condition progresses, but you can sidestep the problem by taking proper care of dental health through regular checkups.

2. Wards off tooth decay

Bacterial plaque damages your tooth enamel, leading to cavities. Older adults face a higher risk of cavities due to dry mouth, which is commonly caused by certain medications used to treat depression, asthma, and high blood pressure. Saliva plays a crucial role in protecting teeth by reducing bacteria, but these medications can cause dry mouth as a side effect.

3. Protects against tooth loss

According to the CDC, many older adults experience tooth loss, with as many as one in five adults aged 65 and older having lost all of their teeth. Although most 40-year-olds still have most of their teeth, it’s something to consider. As you age, tooth loss can impact your nutrition because it becomes increasingly difficult to eat and enjoy fresh food, such as fruits and vegetables.

4. Reduces risk of pneumonia

Older adults who don’t maintain good oral health, particularly those who smoke, have a higher chance of developing bacterial pneumonia because the bacteria in your mouth can reach your lungs when you breathe. Taking care of your oral hygiene as you age can reduce the likelihood of developing this type of pneumonia.

5. Breaks the link between oral health and diabetes

If you struggle to control your blood sugar, you have a higher chance of experiencing dental issues like swollen gums and gum disease because excessive sugar in your saliva creates a favorable environment for bacteria to flourish in your mouth. Also, if you have diabetes, gum disease may affect your ability to control blood sugar levels.

Don’t let your aging teeth rob you of your good health and ability to enjoy the foods you love. Visit Dental Art of South Bay to ensure your 40-year-old teeth are in top shape and ready to carry you through the next 40 years. 

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