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Dental and Oral Health (Seniors)

What is Geriatric Dentistry?

Geriatric dentistry deals with special knowledge, attitudes and technical skills required in the provision of oral health care to older adults. Currently over 13.7% of the U.S. population is aged 65+ years, and this proportion will increase to 23% by the year 2040. The state of Ohio is one of nine states where the older adult population constitutes an increasingly significant percentage of the population.

Oral health is particularly important among the elderly. They are more susceptible to systemic conditions, making them predisposed to developing oral diseases which can directly or indirectly lead to malnutrition, altered communication, further susceptibility to infectious diseases, and diminished quality of life. Today, approximately 40% of older adults are edentulous (toothless), while the remaining 60% of individuals 65 years of age and older retain some or all of their natural teeth.

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Understanding Dental and Oral Health (Seniors)

  • Common Signs of Dental Disease and Dry Mouth
  • Daily Oral Hygiene Routine
  • Dental X-rays
  • Dentures
  • Don't Let a Disability Keep the Dentist Away
  • Nutrition and Oral Health of the Older Adult
  • Oral Health - Tobacco Use and Oral Cancer
  • Side Effects of Medications on Oral Health
  • Watch Your Mouth! (Multi-media partnership)
  • Mouth Power Online (Website)

  • Commonly Asked Questions


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  • Alcohol-Free Toothpaste
  • Can I Stop a Decayed Tooth From Hurting?
  • Can Loose Dentures Be Refitted?
  • Dental Decay and Pain
  • How Can I Take Care of My Teeth As I Age?
  • Implants vs. Root Canals: Which is Better?
  • Is There a Way to Coat Dentures to Prevent Allergic Reactions?
  • Is There Pain Relief For Chronic Sore Gums Under Dentures?
  • My Tooth is Temperature Sensitive: Can I Avoid the Dentist?
  • Removing Dentures
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  • Additional Information

  • Symptoms and Tests
  • Treatment
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    NetWellness Expert Salim M Hayek

    Salim M Hayek, MD, PhD
    Case Western Reserve University

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    Last Updated: Mar 07, 2014