TURKISH JOURNAL OF GERIATRICS-TURK GERIATRI DERGISI, vol.13, no.1, pp.67-72, 2010 (SCI-Expanded)
The normal age-related changes at the masticatory apparatus are attrition of the teeth, loss of elasticity of the mucosa, reduction in the bulk and control of the masticatory muscles, arthritis in the temporomandibular joints, moderate reduction of taste perception and resting salivary flow rate, and periodontal attachment loss. These natural results of aging may become more pronounced with the presence of systemic diseases and become a real problem for geriatric patients. General health condition should be taken into account when considering the prosthetic treatments required to ensure masticatory efficiency and an aesthetic outlook throughout a long life. At the time of diagnosis and during treatment, the prosthetic systems applied in the transition from dentate to edentulous state are as follows sequentially: fixed prosthesis (if only a few teeth are missing); removable prosthesis (single jaw); removable prosthesis (two jaws); a combination of removable and total prosthesis; and then upper and lower total prosthesis.