Chang Dental Group has provided geriatric dental services to patients in Natick and throughout the MetroWest region of Massachusetts for over 20 years.
To schedule an appointment, call or text 508-653-0444.
What Is Geriatric Dentistry?
Geriatric dentistry is dental care for older adults or senior citizens aged 65 and older. Regular dental care is just as important later in life, if not even more important, due to the specific dental risks that affect the elderly. It can become increasingly difficult to brush and floss your teeth effectively as you age, often due to arthritis, declining eyesight, medications, medical illness, and aging teeth, which can result in declining dental health. Geriatric dentistry addresses the specific needs of older adults, providing the advanced care they need to restore and maintain their dental health.
Benefits of Geriatric Dentistry
Geriatric dentistry provides many benefits for seniors:
- Keep your natural teeth. Many older adults still have their natural teeth in place as each generation learns to take better care of their teeth. Regular dental care can help you keep your natural teeth healthy and in place.
- Replace missing, decayed, or damaged teeth. When natural teeth are missing or too decayed or damaged to be saved, replacement options can restore the look and function of your teeth with prosthetics.
- Dietary freedom. Maintaining or restoring your dental health allows you to eat the foods you enjoy, as well as the foods you need for a balanced diet and adequate nutrition.
- Maintain/improve health. Oral health has a direct correlation to your overall health and wellness. Maintaining good oral hygiene can prevent heart disease, diabetes, and even some forms of cancer. Painful or missing teeth will limit your ability to chew food, which will affect what type of food you eat and affect your digestive health.
- Better quality of life. All these benefits contribute to your quality of life, helping you feel physically healthy, and emotionally fulfilled. People in this age group often travel a lot, for leisure and to visit families. You do not want to worry about your teeth when you travel.
Why Choose Chang Dental Group?
Expert Care - Excellent Results
We believe in providing quality dental care for patients of all ages, including older adults. Our compassionate care and comfortable environment help patients feel relaxed and at ease. Our office is fully equipped to accommodate our patients’ needs from limited mobility to vision and hearing impairments.
Our Harvard and Tufts University-educated doctors are highly qualified and experienced in a wide range of dental fields. We have earned our degrees from many prestigious institutions, also serving as educators in our respective specialties. Chang Dental Group has established a reputation for excellence in dentistry, providing an advanced level of care that puts us among the top-rated dentists in the state.
We provide the following dental procedures for older adults:
- Dental cleanings and exams. We provide preventive dental procedures, including teeth cleanings and oral exams.
- Fillings, root canals, and crowns. Our restorative dental procedures include fillings, root canals, and crowns to repair decayed or damaged teeth.
- Dental implants. As teeth age, they can suffer damage from regular usage. Dental implants provide a replacement option for one or more teeth that are missing or unable to be saved. Dental implants are the most comfortable option for replacing damaged, fractured, or missing teeth.
- Dentures. When many or all teeth need to be replaced, we offer traditional and implant-supported dentures.
Any dental services we provide for our patients are also available for adults 65 and older when appropriate.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does Medicare cover dental services?
One of the main reasons adults age 65 and older don’t get the dental care they need is that it is not covered by Medicare. When enrolling for Medicare benefits, there are supplement plans that include dental coverage, but it is typically provided by private insurance companies. If you don’t have dental insurance, financing and payment options are available to make dental care more affordable.
How often should adults over 65 go to the dentist?
It is recommended that routine dental cleanings and oral exams take place every 3-6 months for people of all ages, including adults 65 and older. More frequent dental cleanings may be recommended if there are ongoing issues such as gum disease. Some older adults are not able to keep good oral hygiene due to medical illness. We see them more frequently to prevent rampant decay in the mouth.
What is a hybrid dental implant restoration? Is this a good option for my aging parent who has suffered multiple loss of teeth?
Patients with multiple missing teeth are best treated with a dental implant hybrid restoration that can be a secure, comfortable and long-term solution. Removable dentures often move around in the mouth during chewing, and many patients have difficulties adapting to them. A fixed implant option does not move, feels like your own teeth, and doesn’t have palatal coverage to prevent the “tasting” of food. Our patients who received hybrid implant options are very happy with the results. It restores chewing capability, allowing you to chew effectively, enjoy all of your favorite foods, and get proper nutrition.
How can I help my elderly loved ones maintain their oral health?
If you are the primary caregiver of an elderly loved one, it is important to provide oral care at home as well as assist them in getting to their regular dental appointments. For adults living in assisted living or nursing home facilities, discuss dental health with their caregivers to ensure they are receiving the care they need.
Is there a maximum age for getting dental implants?
No one is ever too old to get dental implants. Indeed, dental implants are most often the therapy for the elderly to replace missing teeth due to the aging teeth suffering damage. Replacing missing teeth with quality prosthetics is worthwhile at any age. The biggest concern is bone density in the jaw, as the bone will start to weaken and dissolve the longer teeth are missing. Bone grafting can help regenerate bone tissue in preparation for dental implants.
It is important to take care of problems earlier than later. It is not uncommon now for patients to live easily into their 90s. Even if you have a dental implant at age 70, we still need to make it work for 20-30 years. The earlier it is done, the more bone you have, and the less difficult the procedure. Also, a patient’s ability to stay in a dental chair for procedures may decrease over the years. We recommend treating problems now so that you can enjoy the benefits of dental implants for years to come.
Do you provide accommodations for elderly adults with limited mobility?
Our facilities are equipped with the necessary accommodations for patients who require wheelchairs, walkers, or other mobility assistance.
Contact Us to Schedule an Appointment
To schedule an appointment, call or text 508-653-0444.