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What Happens during a Dental Exam for Seniors? By Jin Ha Joung on April 29, 2020

Senior woman at eye examDental exams allow the dentists Ridgewood Dental Associates to identify oral health problems before they cause serious harm. Often, the preventative exams are scheduled during dental cleanings for your convenience.

Seniors who are 65 and older are at increased risk of developing dry mouth, gum disease, and other dental problems. To better serve the needs of our senior Ridgewood, NJ, and Bergen County, NJ, patients, Dr. Jin Ha Joung, Dr. Mark Samani, and Dr. Min-Hee offer comprehensive dental exams for seniors. Exams and dental cleanings can often prevent the need for invasive and costly restorative treatments.

What Will Happen during My Senior Dental Exam?

Dental exams for seniors are similar to dental exam for younger adults. Exams for seniors look for specific age-related dental problems, such as oral cancer and dry mouth.

Once you arrive at our, office, you will be greeted by a friendly member of our dental team. During your exam, one of our doctors will ask if you have experienced any symptoms of dental problems, such as toothaches or sore gums. We will take digital x-rays of your teeth, gums, and jaw to check for signs of dental problems. Digital x-rays can catch problems that are not otherwise visible.

Your oral examination will include a thorough check of your teeth and gums. The exam may also include an evaluation of your head, neck, and jaw for signs of health issues. Depending on certain risk factors, one of our doctors may recommend that you undergo oral cancer screening.

What Age-Related Dental Problems Will My Dentist Look For?

Our doctors are trained to look for signs of dental problems that are prevalent among seniors. The cumulative effects of enamel wear and gum recession can place our senior patients at a higher risk for developing these oral health problems.

Loose Prosthetics

Worn, damaged, or loose prosthetics can lead to jaw pain and other harmful conditions. During your dental exam at our practice, one of our doctors will thoroughly examine your restorations. Our office is equipped to replace any type of crown, bridge, or denture that you may have.

Dry Mouth

Seniors are likely to take prescription meds that cause dry mouth. Impaired saliva production can lead to a host of dental problems because saliva is critical for balancing your mouth’s pH balance and washing away cavity-causing bacteria. If you experience dry mouth, one of our doctors can recommend changes in your habits and diet that may reduce that side effect.

Tooth Decay

Even with good oral hygiene habits, some level of enamel wear is inevitable. Seniors are at higher risk of tooth decay. Fortunately, small cavities can easily be treated using tooth-colored fillings that blend with your natural smile.

Gum Disease

Nearly 70 percent of adults 65 and over have gum disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in this country. To prevent tooth loss, one of our doctors may recommend periodontal care and frequent dental cleanings. 

Schedule Your Senior Dental Exam

Preventative care can help you maintain optimal oral health for a lifetime. Our doctors and hygienists are knowledgeable about age-related dental problems and how to treat them. To schedule your dental exam, please contact our office online or call (201) 652-2474.

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