Is it worthwhile to try to keep my teeth as a senior?

At one time keeping your teeth for a lifetime was uncommon, today many seniors enjoy the comfort and function of a healthy mouth throughout their lives. Along with avoiding pain and infection, having your natural teeth, or well fitted prosthetic teeth improves your ability to consume a nutritious balanced diet, and good nutrition is vital to staying healthy.

Illness, the need for medication, reduced saliva, and decreased dexterity are conditions that may occur as we age and these and other health and dental issues can contribute to an increased risk of cavities and gum disease. Your dentist and hygienist can offer help to address these concerns and prevent tooth loss. When teeth are removed there is a gradual loss of the surrounding bone.

The bone is needed to support prosthetic teeth, so the longer the natural teeth stay, the more likely there will be a good fit if dentures are ever needed. Although it may become challenging to maintain your teeth in your senior years, good chewing function is very valuable to your overall health.