IN YOUR 60s...

...fix com­mon prob­lems

Woman & Home (South Africa) - - Health Is The New Wealth -

RISK Many med­i­ca­tions – in­clud­ing blood­pres­sure pills and an­tide­pres­sants – can cause a dry mouth, lead­ing to dif­fi­culty chew­ing and swal­low­ing. Less saliva means plaque col­lects.

SO­LU­TION Your den­tist can pre­scribe a lu­bri­cat­ing gel, which cre­ates ar­ti­fi­cial saliva.

RISK Women in their six­ties can have gum re­ces­sion as a re­sult of over-brush­ing, us­ing a brush that’s too big and too hard, and thin­ning of the tis­sue from loss of oe­stro­gen. The ex­posed root then causes sen­si­tiv­ity.

SO­LU­TION Your den­tist can ap­ply a liq­uid film of de­sen­si­tiser, which lasts for six months. Use a de­sen­si­tis­ing tooth­paste like Sen­so­dyne and, when you fin­ish rins­ing, use your fin­ger to rub paste into the ex­posed root.

RISK Since the root is just den­tine with no pro­tec­tive enamel, it’s much softer and is more prone to cav­i­ties. If there is a deep cav­ity in an ex­posed root, de­cay oc­curs quickly.

SO­LU­TION Your den­tist can ap­ply flu­o­ride var­nish to strengthen an ex­posed root. If there is a deep root cav­ity, a fill­ing can be used to build up the root. You can even have a gum-coloured fill­ing to make it look like the gum is still there. It’s cos­metic, but makes the ex­posed root less sen­si­tive.

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