There are several risk factors associated with gum disease. They range anywhere from a genetic inclination to negative lifestyle habits such as smoking or other forms of tobacco use.
As we age we are more apt to be diagnosed with a disease or condition that will necessitate a prescription drug. Many prescription and over the counter medications cause what is known as “dry mouth.” That is when the flow of our natural saliva is reduced and it becomes more difficult to wash away the bacteria that can cause cavities and gum disease.
Older adults may suffer from a disability or a lack of dexterity that can keep them from maintaining proper home dental care or being able to get from home to the dentist’s office. Electric toothbrushes and prestrung flossing string can make home care easier and hopefully, a family member or caretaker can arrange travel to and from dental appointments.
An imbalanced diet can keep the body from being strong enough to fight off the infection that leads to gum disease. A healthy diet should consist of choices from each basic food group. (Foods high in calcium and protein are particularly good for your teeth.) Avoid or at least limit your intake of sugary soda pop and energy drinks. The acidic content of citrus juices has been known to damage tooth enamel.