This chapter highlights that too often the mouth is not considered as part of the body and forgotten during any clinical assessment, whatever the age of the patient. Ageing affects considerably the multiple components of the orofacial system such as teeth, mucosa, saliva, jaw-closing muscles, temporo-mandibular joint and the alveolar bone. The most prevalent oral conditions in old age remain coronal and root caries as well as periodontal disease, all fostering tooth loss when left to progress without treatment. Most oral diseases and tooth loss can be avoided by managing the related risk factors, notably by adopting a healthy diet, daily meticulous oral hygiene with topical application of fluoride, moderate alcohol intake and smoking cessation. Dental restorations should be state of the art to avoid biological and technical complications. The regular use of dental services along with an individual oral health care plan, ideally established in midlife between the patient and his dentist, help to maintain a healthy mouth and dentition for life.
Oral health Oral diseases Coronal and root caries Tooth loss Peridontal disease Oral mucosa Salivary glands Temporo-mandibular joint
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
WHO (2003) The world health report 2003—shaping the future. World Health Organization, GenevaGoogle Scholar
Petersen PE, Bourgeois D, Ogawa H et al (2005) The global burden of oral disease and risks to oral health. WHO, GenevaGoogle Scholar
Li X, Kolltveit KM, Tronstad L, Olsen I (2016) Systemic diseases caused by oral infection. Clin Microbiol Rev 13:547–558CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sjögren P, Nilsson E, Forsell M et al (2008) A systematic review of the preventive effect of oral hygiene on pneumonia and respiratory tract infection in elderly people in hospitals and nursing homes: effect estimates and methodological quality of randomized controlled trials. J Am Geriatr Soc 56:2124–2130. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1532-5415.2008.01926.xCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
Stafford GD, Arendorf T, Huggett R (1986) The effect of overnight drying and water immersion on candidal colonization and properties of complete dentures. J Dent 14:52–56CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Maupome G, Peters D, Rush WA et al (2006) The relationship between cardiovascular xerogenic medication intake and the incidence of crown/root restorations. J Public Health Dent 66:49–56CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Weeks JC, Dutt A, Robinson PG (2003) Promoting sugar-free medicines: evaluation of a multi-faceted intervention. Community Dent Health 20:246–250PubMedGoogle Scholar