Many times when you think of problems with teeth and cavities, you think of children. However, 50 percent of all children that have cavities get them by the second grade. Adults get their fair share of cavities, too. In fact, there are several common problems that adults experience with their teeth as they move into middle age. There are things that you can do to help take care of your teeth and help prevent further damage to your teeth.
Gum Disease: Most experts agree that over half of all adults have some sort of gum disease. Some is more severe than others. In fact, many adults are not even aware that they have a problem with their gums in the first place. Many adults that have gum disease are affected by other issues such as diabetes or are smokers or have poor oral hygiene. Pregnancy, genetic make up and stress can also have a negative affect on your gum health. How do you prevent gum disease? One way is to make sure you have good oral hygiene. This means visiting your dentist for check ups and cleanings twice a year. Also, just like your mom said, make sure you brush and floss daily.
Tooth Decay: Tooth decay is a common problem among adults. Adults most often get cavities in the recessed areas of their tooth’s surface. If you brush twice a day with a good fluoride toothpaste and floss everyday, you can cut down on the chances of tooth decay. Also, there are special prescription strength mouthwashes and toothpaste your dentist can give you to help even more. These often contain a large amount of fluoride.
Enamel Erosion: Enamel erosion is an extremely common problem among adults. All those years of chomping in ice and hard candy, drinking coffee, caffeinated sodas, teas and lemonade are catching up with your teeth. Also, brushing your teeth too hard will erode the enamel on your teeth. What you can do is to change your diet and switch to a toothbrush that does the brushing for you, such as a Sonicare.
Tooth Infections: As you age, you might find you are more prone to infections in your mouth. These include cavities, cracks in the teeth and gum disease, which can all lead to infections. These can allow bacteria to enter the tooth and cause abscesses. Infections are marked by swelling, pain and throbbing in your mouth. When this happens, you will need to see your dentist as soon as you can. Sometimes you will have to have a deep cleaning or a root canal.
Dry Mouth: Many different things can cause dry mouth. Medications and a change in diet can all contribute. Chewing sugarless gum and avoid smoking and caffeine. Also, adding lots of water to your diet can help combat dry mouth.
Oral Cancer: About 75 percent of call cases of oral cancer are directly associated with tobacco use and in people over the age of 40. In addition, oral cancers are often found too late and survival rates tend to be low. If you use tobacco, you should stop. If you have stopped, you should also visit your dentist on a regular basis for screenings that will rule out oral cancer.
Tempormandibular Joint Disorder (TJD): Women are more likely to suffer from TJD than men. This can be linked to stress, and lack of sleep. It shows up as headaches, muscle aches and neck aches. There are several relaxation techniques that can help this. Also, many dentist recommend the use of a custom made guard that fits over the teeth at night.
If you are an adult, then you should not forget to take care of your teeth. With excellent dental care and living a healthy lifestyle, you can make certain that your teeth will last for years to come.