Not only is saliva critical for eating and digesting food, it also plays a primary role in keeping teeth clean, strong, and free of decay. Unfortunately, saliva production slows as we age. In addition, older adults are more likely to take medications that cause dry mouth (xerostomia). Among the most common culprits are antihistamines, decongestants, diuretics and other blood pressure medications, pain pills, and drugs used to treat urinary incontinence and enlarged prostates. As a result of these and other potential causes, “dry mouth” may arise, which leads to bad breath and also increases the risk of gum disease. To guard against these risks, it is advisable to have regular dental checkups and keep an updated list of medications.
At West Brookfield Dental, our purpose in presenting this column is to exhibit the virtues of professional care in achieving and maintaining a healthy, vibrant smile. Through a combination of proven techniques and innovative technology, plus communication and compassionate concern, we attempt to move our patients toward an optimum state of oral health. When was your last dental checkup? Now is a good time to schedule an appointment for comprehensive dental care, including help with dry mouth, cleanings, restorations, cosmetic work, or gum disease treatment. Call us at 9 West Main St., West Brookfield, 508.867.2777.
P.S. Dry mouth can make it more difficult to wear dentures.