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Not Wearing Dentures Makes You More Likely to Be Homebound

It’s not just speculation, it’s science: wearing dentures can help you be a more active, more outgoing person as you get older. Especially for people at the younger end of the retirement range, having fewer teeth and not wearing dentures makes you more likely to be homebound. That’s according to a new study of Japanese seniors age 65 and up.

Dentures give you the ability to be active and enjoy social activities, especially when those dentures are well-designed, so they can help you avoid becoming homebound. Instead, you can maintain a more vibrant lifestyle as you get older, which can help you live longer.

dentures can make you more active

A Large Study of Older Adults

This study looked at nearly 4400 Japanese adults age 65 and up who were not homebound at the baseline when data was collected. Researchers looked not only at dental health (only the number of teeth and whether they wore dentures if they had less than 20 teeth, no information on gum disease or other dental health status), but also at demographic variables, such as marital status, education, income depression, where they lived, and whether they lived with their family.

Then four years later they checked to see whether the individuals had become homebound. Overall, 7.4% of the individual had become homebound, but who became homebound was related to their dental health. Only 4.4% of those with 20 teeth at baseline became homebound, compared to 9.7% of those who had 19 or fewer teeth and didn’t wear dentures. Those with 19 or fewer teeth, but who wore dentures, fared significantly better, with only 8.8% being homebound.

When looking just at the variable of dentures, adults age 65-74 who had fewer than 20 teeth and didn’t wear dentures were 2.5 times as likely to be homebound. After accounting for variables like sex, marital status, income, education, and the population density of the area they lived, it was found that people in the 65-74 age group were 1.78 times more likely to be homebound if they had fewer than 20 teeth and didn’t wear dentures.

Adults in this age group wearing dentures were indistinguishable from those with 20 or more teeth.

Dentures Enable You to Be More Active

We’ve talked before about all the ways that dentures can help you enjoy a more active, more social life as you grow older. This is especially important for people who lose their teeth at a younger age, whether in your 60s, 50s, 40s, or younger. Not wearing dentures can make it harder for you to overcome some of the emotional difficulties associated with tooth loss.

It’s harder to participate in social activities when you’re self-conscious about missing teeth. And it’s especially difficult if you don’t have dentures that can help support your jaw, and, therefore, your head and neck. This can impact your balance and your ability to engage in activities that can be increasingly demanding, whether it’s walking or driving to meet friends.

And these effects are cumulative. If you don’t wear dentures at a young age, or if you wear poorly fitting dentures, your jaw position is likely to get more out distorted over time, making both social and physical activities.

Take Advantage of the Best Dentures

If you are looking to remain socially as physically active as you age, you want dentures that are designed to support those activities. FOY® Dentures are designed to replace your teeth to the highest degree that dentures can do. FOY® Dentures are fitted using neuromuscular dentistry principles so that they can support your remaining physically active. They’re also designed using the most attractive materials and techniques in dentistry, so they give you very natural-looking teeth. These benefits can help you feel younger, which in itself can help you live longer.

And with the support of dental implants, FOY® Dentures can support your bone health and prevent jaw resorption that can lead to distortion of your jaw position.

If you want to learn more about the benefits of FOY® Dentures, please contact a FOY® Dentures dentist today.

About the Author:

This post was written by Rod Strickland. Dr. Strickland is a dentist in Savannah, GA. He is the inventor of the Denture Fountain of Youth® technique.