Dental Caries (Tooth Decay) in Seniors (Age 65 and Over)

Dental caries (tooth decay) remains the most prevalent chronic disease in seniors, even though it is largely preventable. Caries has decreased over the past four decades, though disparities remain among some population groups. Read more »

Tooth Loss in Seniors (Age 65 and Over)

Tooth loss is a sensitive indicator of overall dental health and access to dental care. Overall, the prevalence of both partial and total tooth loss in seniors has decreased since the early 1970s. In spite of this improvement, significant disparities remain in some population groups. Read more »

Treatment Needs in Seniors (Age 65 and Over)

One way to measure access to dental care is to ask people when they last visited a dentist. In seniors, this measure has improved in recent years, although disparities remain among some population groups. Read more »

Oral Cancer

Approximately 30,000 Americans are diagnosed each year with this largely preventable type of cancer that affects the mouth and/or pharynx. Overall, oral cancer rates and 5-year survival rated have increased approximately from the mid 1970s until the latest National Cancer Institute Survey. In both of these measures there are significant disparities in some population groups. Oral cancer rates increase with age. The increase becomes more rapid after age 50 and peaks between ages 60 and 70. Read more »

Facial Pain

The most common cause of facial pain is temporomandibular muscle and joint disorder (TMJD), which causes recurrent or chronic pain and dysfunction in the jaw joint and its associated muscles and supporting tissues. Because most data on TMJD have been gathered from studies with small samples and people of varying ages, little information is available on how this condition specifically affects seniors age 65 and over. Read more »

Last Reviewed
August 2021