According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 1 in 6 people worldwide will be aged 60 years and over by 2030.i An aging population means that, for many of us, we can spend more time with loved ones, but it also means that the healthcare sector is facing increased pressures to meet demands and improve patient care. This is especially true within dentistry, as a patient’s dental needs could become more complex as they age.
Nowadays, there is more variety of treatment options for patients who are suffering from tooth loss as a result of aging, from removeable to fixed solutions. As a busy technician, you will likely be fabricating prostheses for your clients’ older patients, many of whom may have specific needs and requirements that mean you must tailor your approach to each case. It is important, both for your clients and your business, to employ high-quality materials so your clients’ patients can enjoy a beautiful and functional dentition.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS?
Tooth loss can be a devastating occurrence for any age group, but for the older generations the attitude seems to be that it is just a part of ‘getting older’. As you know, edentulism not only damages self-confidence, but can actually put the individual at risk of further health issues. For instance, evidence suggests that edentulous patients may lack certain nutrients and this puts them at risk of various health disorders,ii with one study finding that the participants with a higher number of teeth were better nourished when compared to those who had less.iii Oral health in older individuals may also begin to decline due to a range of interlinking factors. A study of 353 adults, with a mean age of 74.9, noted a higher prevalence and severity of root caries.iv This appears to be an issue for older adults worldwide.v
There are many reasons as to why a number of older patients have poorer oral health. Researchers have suggested that age-related salivary changes, a poor diet and gingival recession are the main culprits.vi The occurrence of xerostomia, as a result of polypharmacy, is also thought to affect oral health in older individuals.vii Oral health in the UK has certainly improved in recent years, and many older adults are retaining their natural dentition for longer. However, it is thought that 6% of British adults have no natural teeth,viii which means that many treatment options have been designed and improved to restore aesthetics and function.
WHY DO DENTURES HAVE A BAD NAME?
Dental technicians are able to satisfy far more demands than ever before, thanks to the impressive strides taken in enhancing dental tools, materials and modalities. Dental implants are growing as a popular restorative choice, providing enhanced stability, aesthetics and function. Research has supported the efficacy of dental implants, demonstrating that older adults can enjoy good oral health with this treatment option.ix
Dentures have not always had the best reputation. Parables have circulated about how these solutions change the appearance of the smile and how they make mastication and speaking challenging. As you well know, a well-made denture will not only be comfortable, but will look discreet and natural. For many patients, the flexibility afforded by dentures still make them a popular modality. They are also considered to be easier to maintain and are more economical than dental implants. As such, you will likely still see many orders for dentures in your day-to-day work.
A LABORATORY THAT PRIDES ON QUALITY
Regardless of whether you have been depending on the same product for years, or are seeking something new, it is always worth reassessing what you use in your lab to improve the work you create.
When it comes to denture acrylics, you need a material that will provide you with durability and strength, as well as one that is easy to handle. Kemdent is delighted to offer dental technicians their Acron Hi – High Impact Denture Base Acrylic, a remarkable acrylic ideal for high-quality, long-lasting dentures. This solution produces a malleable and easily packable ‘dough’, a particular advantage if you are using an injection moulding protocol. It is easy to trim and, thanks to its unique Multi-Matrix Technology, your dentures will be resistant to fractures and breakages. Give your clients and their patients prostheses that last, and consider adding the Kemdent Acron Hi – High Impact Denture Base Acrylic into your dental repertoire.
As the population continues to age, every sphere within healthcare will need to strategise on the most ideal approaches to support older adults and their varying requirements. Every patient deserves to enjoy the pleasures of a functioning dentition that looks and feels natural. Producing work that is of an optimal quality will not only satisfy your clients, but will restore the confidence and manage the oral needs of the nation’s golden agers too.
For more information about the leading solutions available from Kemdent, please visit www.kemdent.co.uk or call 01793 770 256