Getting Seniors to Think About Nutrition

Getting Seniors to Think About Nutrition

As we age, our bodies no longer take in as much nutrition as they used to. This means that senior citizens, aside from experiencing the usual changes associated with age, are at risk of not getting what they need to keep their bodies running. We can usually see the effects of this on the mouth, specifically their teeth and gums.

Thankfully, there is something that can be done about this. You see, there are two main reasons that seniors are at risk. The first is due to being on a fixed (and usually small) income. If they can’t buy more nutritious food, we are setting them up for failure.

The second reason is that they don’t know about the changes in their nutritional needs. The Health Promotion Board is hoping to fix this latter problem by providing much needed educational information to seniors. The toolkit they have constructed contains an educational poster and a cookbook full of nutritious recipes. The kit, aptly named the Recipe for Healthy Ageing, also contains specific information and guidelines for getting enough protein and calcium.

No matter what age we are, eating a healthy diet is the best way to prevent disease, especially diseases which are chronic. Since senior citizens are more susceptible to chronic conditions, this is one group that we should be focusing on. Sadly, this is often not the case, especially for seniors in assisted living facilities.

Even small steps like reducing salt and eating more fruit and vegetables dramatically reduces the risk of stroke and heart disease. But, if seniors don’t have this information, then they don’t know it is something they have control over. Not all will opt for a healthier diet, but the option should ALWAYS be available.

The Health Promotion Board planned ahead when designing the toolkit, it is currently available in four languages. There will be a quarter million copies made available in paper format, but it is also able to be viewed online. If the kit is successful, more paper copies and language options are likely to be available.

Since senior citizens are such an underserved group, this toolkit may seem like a drop in the bucket, but it is a great start. In other areas of the world, as people age their communities or family members take care of them. In the United States this concept is foreign. Many seniors will find themselves having to take care of themselves even as mundane tasks become more challenging.

The educational toolkit will help, it really will. I think about my grandpa. For fifty years my grandmother cooked all of his meals. When she passed, he was lucky if he could boil his own water. The recipes in the book are not only nutritious, but many are fairly simple. The point is to get the elderly eating better, even if they aren’t master chefs. That is exactly what this toolkit provides, a quick and easy solution for those who need it most.

Before treating gum, tooth, or other oral problems consult with Dr. JJ Edderai. A dental check-up every three to four months will allow Dr. Edderai to keep a watchful eye on your oral health and prevent cavities before they start. For answers to some of the most commonly asked questions, visit my FAQ page at https://www.northmiamibeachdentist.com/faqs/.

Copyright Dr. Jean-Jacques Edderai -2016

 

Please follow and like us:
error

Stopping Cavities Before They Form

Stopping Cavities Before They Form

 

The toughest thing about being a dentist is seeing patients come in with damage that could have been prevented with proper oral hygiene or an earlier dental visit. When cavities first begin to form, before they can even be seen with the naked eye, this is the best time to treat them. If cavities are caught earlier enough, they are often reversible with restorative treatments. This means that you may not always need a filling.

A study conducted at the University of Sydney involved performing 19 randomized and controlled trials over the course of three years. There was a follow-up performed on these same patients four years later. After the full seven years, those patients that had the restorative procedure done had 30% fewer cavities overall than those who did not get the procedure.

According to Mary Hayes from the American Dental Association, the traditional approach has been decay removal and a filling, sometimes including surgery. This method of remineralization is a much more therapeutic approach. Early stages of decay can be seen with a Soprolife machine, available at the office of Dr. J.J. Edderai.

Tooth decay is caused by bacteria which thrive on the sugars in your mouth. In turn, these bacteria produce acids (yes, the corrosive kind). If the acids are not removed, they create microscopic pores when they remove tooth minerals. From this point to the full development of a cavity may take years. Once it reaches a full cavity, the restoration process can’t work and the bacteria can spread to your gums. But, anytime before this, the treatment can be applied. To restore minerals, the researchers gave the test group fluoride varnish treatments 2-4 times annually. In addition, they were encouraged to limit sugar and to maintain proper oral hygiene.

Currently, when a person gets a filling, they have a greater chance of developing more decay within only a couple years. In fact, in 60% of patients will have this happen. If we can stop decay before it becomes an even bigger problem, than we are encouraging whole mouth health.

There is a large debate over whether fluoride would be the best liquid to use, as in high enough doses, it is toxic. The levels needed for the toxicity to be an issue are not reached from dental treatments or from our drinking water. But, it makes some people uneasy.

For this reason, among others, fluoride is not the only treatment being explored. Some researchers are working with Xylitol (a common sugar alternative), antibacterial rinses, and other substances. Like the fluoride rinses, more studies must be conducted before a conclusion can be confirmed. These treatments, if they can be proven viable on the majority of the population, would reduce the use of drills, good news for any patient.

There is a vast amount of research available on remineralization. All we need to do now is figure out the best substance, the best formula to use to achieve maximum success. Most dentists are on board with this idea. Although, for some of the more seasoned dentists, it will be a weird transition. When you have been removing decay for half a lifetime, not removing it takes some getting used to.

Before treating gum, tooth, or other oral problems consult with Dr. JJ Edderai. A dental check-up every three to four months will allow Dr. Edderai to keep a watchful eye on your oral health and prevent cavities before they start. For answers to some of the most commonly asked questions, visit my FAQ page at https://www.northmiamibeachdentist.com/faqs/.

Copyright Dr. Jean-Jacques Edderai -2016

 

Please follow and like us:
error

Are You a Candidate for Dental Implants

Are You a Candidate for Dental Implants

Millions of individuals have at least one dental implant. The technology making them easier to shape and install have created a boon for the field. With this in mind, the pre-op work should not be overlooked. Getting your implants is a routine procedure, but making a plan is the best way to ensure their success.

Nearly anyone who has missing teeth can get implants. If you have diabetes that is not controlled, smoke, have gum disease, or cancer the ability of your implants to fuse to your bone can be affected. It is best to bring these issues up at your initial consultation so your dentist can adjust your treatment plan accordingly.

Just like some other dental visits, the implants process starts off with 3D scans of your mouth using a CT scanner. The imaging makes sure that your implant is exactly the right size and in the perfect position in relationship to your jaw bone.

When you have teeth removed, your alveolar bone (the bone surrounding your teeth) starts to shrink. Within the first year, a quarter of the original tissue can be lost. Within the next few years, it continues to decrease. Once the alveolar bone disappears, your jawbone will begin to shrink.

If your tooth is being removed just before the implant is placed, your dentist may graft in some bone to prevent the bone from shrinking. In some cases, bone can be regrown to this same effect. When implants are installed they are fused to the existing bone. This stops the bone from being lost after tooth removal.

Putting in implants is not a one-person job. No matter how skilled a dentist is, a full dental team is needed for the procedure. The team includes a periodontist or an oral surgeon with implant training, a lab tech, and a restorative dentist.

There are two types of implants you can get, depending on your needs. The first is a single tooth replacement, the second is a fixed multiple tooth replacement. With the first option, you will have a custom made crown attached to the implant. The crown will be either screwed or cemented in to keep it permanently in place. When multiple teeth are replaced, a temporary cap is placed until the area is healed. Then a permanent version will be affixed. It is also standard procedure to place a few implants into your jaw if a lower denture needs to be held in place.

The best thing about implants is that even though they vary in structure, your implants will look, feel, and act like your natural teeth. Implants aren’t susceptible to periodontitis, but there is a condition called implantitis that can affect you after getting implants. To avoid this, go to a qualified, well reviewed dentist and make all your follow up appointments a priority. If one of your implants breaks or cracks, they can be removed by your dentist and new ones will be attached in their place. This step is easy and can be carried out without extra surgery.

Before treating gum, tooth, or other oral problems consult with Dr. JJ Edderai. A dental check-up every three to four months will allow Dr. Edderai to keep a watchful eye on your oral health and prevent cavities before they start. For answers to some of the most commonly asked questions, visit my FAQ page at https://www.northmiamibeachdentist.com/faqs/.

Copyright Dr. Jean-Jacques Edderai -2016

 

Please follow and like us:
error