Senior Dental Care in North Vancouver

Did you know that only 100 years ago, in the 1920’s, the life expectancy for men and women in Canada hovered around 60 years of age? Now, it’s just shy of 83, an improvement of over 20 years added on. This is thanks to many things, including sanitation, modern medicine, and technology.

This increased life expectancy introduced a new population, the over-60 crowd, known as our senior citizens. The golden years are enjoyable for many as they reap the rewards of retirement, spend time with grown family and grandkids, they have time to travel, and take up new hobbies with the extra hours in the day.

These years also present their own set of challenges, as in previous centuries, we didn’t have a need for healthcare for this demographic.

Seniors now rely on age-appropriate daily medication, devices to correct failing eyes, and surgical intervention to replace worn-out joints–but what about their teeth?
As we age, our teeth and the rest of our bodies shift and change, rarely for the better. Our teeth increase in sensitivity to hot and cold, ache due to disease and decay, and discolour from the years of staining food, drink, and tobacco use.

It is just as important now; some even argue more so, maintaining a regular oral health routine to care for your teeth and gums–including regular dental trips.

Senior Dental Care in North Vancouver

Why You Need a Senior Dental Care Expert with Experience

While general dentists treat most of the adult population, it’s important to seek out a dentist with experience with the senior demographic as the problems seen, and solutions necessary are unique to the ageing mouth.

At Bayview Lonsdale Dentist, we know the value of good oral hygiene and the benefits it can provide to our older patients.

For example, did you know that good oral hygiene can help prevent lung infections like bacterial pneumonia? Keeping teeth clean and regularly washing away bacteria reduces exposure to bacteria and its chances of entering the lungs.
And, that advanced age paired with gum disease increases the risk of heart attack and stroke, as harmful mouth bacteria may release toxins into the bloodstream and damage heart tissue.

Poor oral hygiene leads not only to lost teeth but lost time. Let our expert senior dentists work with you to keep you eating, talking and smiling.

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Our Dental Services for Seniors

For our healthy senior patients, cleanings and checkups are recommended bi-annually, but for those suffering from oral health problems, your treatment plan may look a little different. We offer a wide range of routine, restorative and cosmetic procedures, including:

Plus, we are prepared to deal with health conditions such as diabetes and cancer that require special attention regarding teeth and gums.

Typical Dental Health Issues for Seniors

Many oral health issues seniors face are similar to those of any age–cavities, chips, cracks, staining, disease and decay but others are unique to those of advanced age.

Gum Disease

Years of plaque and tartar buildup, forgotten food particles, tobacco usage, poor diet, health conditions and ill-fitting orthodontic devices can contribute to gum disease, in turn.

Tooth Loss

Losing one or more teeth may require orthodontic devices for improved eating, talking, smiling, and self-confidence. Unresolved tooth loss may result in.

Structural Changes

Physical appearance changes may happen in the jaw and alignment due to bone loss and missing and shifting teeth.

Discoloured and Darkened Teeth

This is caused by years of staining food and beverage consumption, changes in dentin beneath the tooth enamel, and other problems that require a dental exam.

Dry Mouth

This can result from various issues that lead to decreased saliva production.

In seniors, it’s commonly seen as a side effect from particular medicines, including radiation after cancer treatment, and a handful of health conditions that lead to dry mouths, such as diabetes.

Increased Sensitivity

Exposed roots, tooth decay and receding gums all contribute to increased pain and sensitivity to hot and cold.

Decreased Sense of Taste

Sensory deficits and medications, health conditions and age may reduce the ability to taste.

Oral Health Challenges Seniors Face

Sight, dexterity and motor skills can become impaired as we age, leading to a lower quality of oral care. Lack of skills, the presence of arthritis, and cognitive impairments all may result in missed food particles, inability to brush and floss with ease, or at all.

It is important to brush at least twice a day, floss daily, rinse with mouthwash to help eliminate bacteria, and of course, maintain regular visits with your dentist–and that’s where we come in.

Our Approach to Senior Dental Care in Vancouver

When you come into our senior dental clinic, along with patience and compassion, you can expect:

Our Approach to Senior Dental Care in Vancouver

When you come into our senior dental clinic, along with patience and compassion, you can expect:

  • An in-depth health history: We will ask you about your oral and general health, discuss your medications, and any dental concerns you may have.
  • An Oral Examination: We will evaluate the mouth, teeth, gums and surrounding structures for function and appearance.

    We will look for any loose teeth, cavities, or signs of infections, screen for oral cancer, assess dental devices, and more.

  • Follow-Up: After our assessment and diagnosis, we will put together a treatment plan to book any restorative or cosmetic procedures to enhance your oral health.

Choose North Vancouver’s Top Senior Dental Care Clinic

Our senior patients can trust the expert senior dental care services at Bayview Lonsdale Dentist as we strive to provide compassionate care that’s gentle, effective and affordable.

We make time and take our time to explain, educate, and answer any questions you may have. We offer advanced oral cancer screening and aim to catch it early as we know the value of prompt intervention and treatment.

Bayview Lonsdale Dental clinic offers free parking, specialized treatment plans, flexible financial plans, and direct billing. Whether the appointment is for yourself or your ageing family members, trust that our family-friendly practice will take care of you and yours.

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Senior Dental Care FAQs

How often should seniors visit the dentist?

Seniors should still visit their dentist twice a year for checkups and cleanings. They may need additional appointments if the dentist finds conditions that require further treatment or if they wear dental devices that need regular adjusting or maintenance. 

What happens to teeth in the elderly?

Advanced age leads to receding gums, gum disease, tooth decay, increased cavities, dry mouth, discoloured teeth, bacterial infections and tooth loss. 

How does diabetes affect oral health?

The imbalance of blood sugars can lead to…

  • The high presence of sugar in your saliva can feed the bacteria in plaque leading to gum disease and decay
  • The reduction of saliva, leading to dry mouth
  • Increased inflammation and bleeding of gums
  • Weakened white blood cells fight bacteria, and infections and facilitate healing

Having a good dentist on your healthcare team is important to help manage your diabetes.