Oral Hygiene in the Elderly


  • Brush at least twice a day with a soft toothbrush.
  • Focus on the area where the tooth meets the gum.
  • Use a high quality power toothbrush for best results.
  • Floss regularly.


Many elderly patients find maintaining their own oral hygiene challenging. Patients with the following conditions are at particular risk:

  • Strokes
  • Arthritis
  • Dementia

Clinicians should offer guidance and suggest assistive devices for patients and caregivers.

Digital Vision/Punchstock
Digital Vision/Punchstock


Robinson PG, Deacon SA, Deery C, et al. Manual versus powered toothbrushing for oral health. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2005, Issue 2. Art. No.: CD002281. 

Wiener RC, et al. Preventive dental care in older adults with diabetes. The Journal of the American Dental Association. 2016; 147(10): 797-802.