For the Public

For the Public image

Seniors and Dental Health: A Comprehensive Guide to a Healthy Mouth

Many adults have fond memories of walking into their grandparents’ bedroom as children, only to see grandma’s teeth in a cup by her bedside table. This common scenario leads to many interesting questions from young children, but it also hides a serious health concern. While dentures can be common in some older adults, they are more than just a funny family story. They’re a sign that older adults are at higher risk for oral health problems, including tooth decay and loss.

Oral health is about more than just aesthetics and the ability to eat. Gum disease and tooth decay actually increase the risk of other health problems, including cardiovascular disease and bacterial infections. Sadly, over half of all older adults, 68% to be exact, suffer from gum disease, and nearly 20% have untreated cavities. Oral health and the resulting health problems are serious risks for older adults. 

This guide explores some of the reasons seniors are at such high risk for oral health problems. It also looks at solutions to some of those problems, while giving tips on dental hygiene for older adults. Finally, it provides a list of low-cost resources for seniors who cannot afford dental care.

Access the full guide   here

Keep your smile healthy and bright

Your oral care needs are as unique as you are. The ADA website has everything you need to know about keeping your smile healthy and bright. Explore ADA seal products, find helpful information, search for an ADA dentist, and/or grab tools for your classroom.

ADA Seal dental care products

The ADA Seal of Acceptance has been the leading mark of dental product safety and efficacy for 90 years. All ADA Seal products products have passed our toughest tests for safety and effectiveness. Looking for the right product? Search all the current Seal products by company, category, and more.

Dental care topics

Advice for keeping your teeth and gums healthy, plus common dental concerns. offers resources by life stages for adultsteensbabies and kids, and pregnancy.

Dental care questions

Not sure how to choose a dentist? When should your child see a dentist? What can you expect at a visit? Get the answer to your dental care questions.

Find an ADA dentist

Your teeth are amazing. Seeing an ADA dentist keeps them that way. Find an ADA dentist near you.

Tools for educators

Teaching children good oral hygiene habits early can lead to a lifetime of healthy smiles. The ADA offers helpful oral care resources you can use in the classroom and the community. Explore available tools.