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question

Does everyone need dentures eventually?

American Dental Association
American Dental Association
answer
No, not everyone will need dentures at some point in their life. In the past, it was an assumption that as we age we would lose our natural teeth. But, that’s not the case for today’s older adults who are keeping their natural teeth longer than ever before. 

Brushing and flossing your teeth is just as important for you as it is for your grandchildren. Even though it may have been years since you’ve had a cavity, your risk of cavities increases with age. One of the reasons is dry mouth—a common side effect of many prescription medications.

Brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste. Choose a toothbrush with soft bristles and a small head to get to those hard to reach areas. Replace your toothbrush every three or four months, or sooner if the bristles becomes frayed. If you have arthritis or other condition that limits movement, try an electric toothbrush. Clean between teeth daily with floss. If floss is too difficult to work with, try a floss pick or tiny brushes made specifically to clean between teeth. 

Get regular dental checkups. Why? As you age, the nerves inside your teeth become smaller and less sensitive. By the time you feel pain from a cavity, it may be too late and you may lose your tooth. There are also more serious conditions that your dentist will look for, like oral cancer and gum disease, which do not always cause pain until the advanced stages of the disease. By then, it’s more difficult and costly to treat.
 
RealAge
RealAge
answer
The idea that everyone ends up with dentures when they get older is a misconception. Not everyone loses their natural teeth. In fact, if you take good care of your teeth, they should last your entire life. If you want to lower your chances of needing dentures later in life, you need to practice proper oral hygiene now. That means brushing at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and flossing once a day as well. The more natural teeth you can keep in your mouth, the better off you will be. While dentures can allow you to eat and speak after your natural teeth fall out, they can’t provide you with any sensation. You won’t actually be able to feel food on your teeth as you chew and learning how to speak will take some practice.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.