How To Avoid Periodontal Disease As Your Teeth Age

21 January 2015
 Categories: Dentist, Blog


As you age, your teeth and gums also age. This means that there is an increased risk for periodontal disease if proper oral hygiene is not maintained. Changes in the body play a major role in the health of your teeth as you age. This why frequent visits to your dentist as well as proper dental care are essential if you are to prevent tooth decay and periodontal disease. Here are some common changes that you can expect to see as your teeth age and the steps you can take to reduce them.

Darkening Teeth

As you age you will notice that your teeth begin to darken. This is because when dentin, the middle layer of the tooth, begins to age, it gets thicker as well as darker. While the dentin is getting thicker and darker, the outer part of the tooth, called the enamel, starts getting thinner. When the enamel gets thinner, it causes the dentin to become more visible. This gives the appearance that the tooth is darkening. In order to reduce the appearance of darkening, you should try to avoid drinking too much wine, tea and coffee as this can stain the enamel and make the teeth look even darker. Aggressive bleaching methods that involve over the counter whiteners are to be avoided as this can lead to further thinning of the enamel and damage the gum line and put you at risk for periodontal disease.

Receding Gums

When you start getting older, your gums may start receding. This causes the jaw bone to start sinking, leading to more exposure for the roots of your teeth. When the roots of the teeth are exposed, it can lead to an increase in sensitivity. When teeth become extremely sensitive, they may be hard for you to brush and floss, especially if you have arthritis or have suffered a stroke. This can put you at a greater risk for periodontal disease because of improper oral hygiene. In order to reduce the chances of plaque buildup and tooth decay, you can use fluoride rinses to help to keep the gums and teeth healthy.  

The best way to deal with aging teeth is to be aware of the changes that you can expect and to visit your dentist regularly. Since the changes mentioned may happen gradually, regular dental checkups with a dental office like will help your dentist to spot the problem quickly. This gives you a greater change of avoiding periodontal disease, which could eventually lead to tooth loss.