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Watch Your Mouth: Michigan Association of Endodontists Offers Four Part Series on Keeping Your Teeth Healthy
Date:3/24/2008

elop, he said.

Lindemann explains that individuals in their 20s or 30s need to continue to focus heavily on avoiding cavities and dental trauma due to injury. As people enter their 50s, they often develop more issues with periodontal and endodontic conditions. However, Lindemann cautions that all ages need to be aware of dental hygiene.

"Thirty-year-olds do develop periodontal and endodontic problems, and 50- year-olds do have cavities, so each age group needs to be mindful of regular dental check-ups so problems can be detected early and resolved quickly," he said.

As individuals enter their later years, it is important to be aware of how health conditions and medications can affect dental health. And vice versa.

"Problems in the mouth, like gum disease or decay and infection, can influence systemic health," Lindemann says. "Many conditions like diabetes or heart problems may be made worse because the mouth isn't healthy."

Medications can also have a significant impact.

"Most older adults take both prescription and over-the counter drugs. Many of these, especially medications to treat hypertension, can cause dry mouth, a condition that can lead to serious oral health problems," he said.

Lindemann explains that "our saliva is so vital to the health of our mouths that when the quantity is reduced, oral health can suffer. Dental decay can appear. Many times this decay strikes the vulnerable root surface which may have become exposed as we age."

At any age, partnering with appropriate dental experts is essential.

"A sparkling healthy smile is attractive at any age and is important to both health and socialization," Lindemann said. "Our teeth work hard for us over the decades, so take care to treat them well."

For more information, or to locate an endodontist near you, visit http://www.aae.org .

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SOURCE Michigan Association of Endodontists
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