You may have heard that the federal Department of Health and Human Services has recommended a level of 0.7 milligrams per liter as optimal for fluoride in drinking water throughout the United States.
The State Board of Health, which oversees the state's fluoridation of drinking water rule, has revised the rule to reflect this new standard. The new rule was adopted by the Board on March 9, 2016 and went into effect May 9, 2016.
Learn more about fluoride in drinking water:
- Fluoride in Our Water: Facts You Need To Know to Make a Healthy Choice, American Academy of Pediatrics (includes video)
- The Debate Over Fluoridated Water, American Academy of Pediatrics
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Community Water Fluoridation webpage
People are living longer and healthier lives and a healthy mouth is necessary for a healthy body. Your oral health can offer clues about your overall health? Many older adults have high rates of tooth decay and gum disease which is a form of inflammation that can affect the entire body. The mouth can show early signs of diabetes, cancer, immune disorders, and complications from medications that show up in the gums, teeth, throat and tongue. It is important to see a dental provider for an oral screening at least once a year.
The Oral Health Promotions Cards and Brochures for Older Adults are now available in Spanish. These Oral Health Promotions Cards and Brochures lists evidence-based oral health messages for older adults.
Preventing tooth decay and gum disease starts at home. With proper brushing, flossing, fluoride, and regular dental care that includes an oral cancer exam, older adults are able to keep their teeth a lifetime.
Did you know that an unhealthy mouth can affect the rest of your body?
- Untreated gum disease may be a risk factor for stroke, heart and lung disease.
- Diabetes and HIV/AIDS may first be found in your mouth by your dental provider.
- Wearing poor-fitting dentures or having loose and missing teeth can cause poor nutrition.
- Infection from gum disease may cause failure of joint replacements when the infection travels through your blood stream to the site of the replacement.
- Smokers have more gum disease and oral cancer than non-smokers.
Washington Information Network 2-1-1
Senior Centers with Dental Hygiene Services (PDF)
Geriatric Dental Group, Federal Way 253-839-1300, Portland 503-772-3677, is a non-profit organization whose mission is to bring dental care to low-income seniors age 55 and older, and patients of any age requiring wheelchair access. Geriatric Dental Group also has the capability to deliver dental treatment to non-ambulatory patients in care facilities and private homes.
Grant Denture Clinic
2902 S 74th Street Tacoma
Oral Health Messages
Oral Health for Older Adults (PDF)
Taking Care of Your Teeth and Mouth
Center for Disease Control & Prevention: Oral Health for Older Americans
Periodontal (Gum) Disease: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments
Enfermedad de las encias o enfermedad periodontal (Spanish)
Diabetes Dental Tips
La diabetes: Consejos sobre la salud oral (Spanish)