Use of many Antidipressents and related diabetic conditions contribute to root cavities.
Cavities are common in older adults both on the crown surface, the portion of the tooth covered by enamel, and the root surface. Recent research suggests that older adults are more likely to develop new cavities on the crown and root surfaces at a greater rate than younger populations. To understand why this is happening consider the following facts:
1. Older adult’s gums tend to “pull away” or recede from the teeth showing more root surfaces. This usually results from years of scrubbing the teeth vigorously with a stiff toothbrush.
2. Many older adults are keeping their natural teeth longer than past older generations making them more likely to develop cavities.
3. The saliva in an older adult’s mouth changes in amount and composition.
4. Chronic illness and disabilities make daily mouth care more difficult to perform, leaving behind damaging bacteria on the root surfaces.
5. Root cavities can grow rapidly if there is a lack of sufficient home care such as daily brushing and cleaning between the teeth.
6. Dry mouth, known as xerostomia, contributes to the development of root cavities. Food and plaque stick much more readily to teeth in a dry mouth. The side effect of many medications is a dry mouth.
7. Poor gum and bone health also contribute to the formation of root cavities.
8. Eating a diet high in fermentable carbohydrates; carbohydrates that turn to simple sugars in the mouth, such as cookies, cakes, soft drinks, candy, bread, crackers, bananas and breakfast cereals may also result in cavities on the root surfaces.