Tooth loss is one of the main concerns of adults everywhere in the world, studies show that tooth loss has decreased from the early 70’s thanks to better education and new dental treatments, yet the problem is still prevalent specially among adults aged 65 and over.
Periodontal disease is one of the most common causes of tooth loss, periodontal disease is basically a localized infection in the gums and supporting structures of the teeth which leads to bone loss. Having poor dental hygiene and untreated dental decay can progress into periodontal disease and subsequently tooth loss. Periodontal disease can also be a result of diabetes, poor nutrition and smoking,
Data from 2012 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that half of American adults suffer from gum disease, which translates into almost 65 million American adults that have mild, moderate or severe periodontitis that could potentially lead to tooth loss.
Tooth loss does not only affect the physical appearance, it goes way beyond that, affecting your chewing patters, allowing food to accumulate in the space where the tooth is missing, it changes facial appearance, the teeth next to the space begin to tilt and drift out of alignment.
“First thing we need to be clear on is that losing your teeth is NOT a normal part of aging, now our life expectancy is actually higher than it used to be, we need to take care of our teeth so they reach the senior years in good conditions. Prevention is key, having a good dental hygiene and visiting the dentist at least twice a year are the best practices to avoid having problems as we grow older; but if the problem already exists, patients need to know periodontal disease can be treated, and lost teeth can and need to be replaced”, explained Dr. Simon Flikier from the Flikier Dental Institute in Costa Rica. “Gum disease goes beyond the mouth, it can actually affect your overall health”, he continued.
Some of the symptoms of periodontal disease are: bleeding and swollen gums (gingivitis), bad breath or bad taste in your mouth.
Get professional dental care
If high prices of dental care in the United States discourage you from visiting your dentist with regularity, consider scheduling a dentist appointment your next visit to Costa Rica. Prices for dental care in Costa Rica are low compared to the United States and Europe, and specialists receive high-quality training and are evaluated with the same criteria as dentists are in the U.S.A.
Caring for your teeth is caring for your health, prevention and proper hygiene are key to avoiding tooth loss as you get older.