Fourth Annual Linda Niessen Geriatric Dentistry Symposium

May 5th, 2016

An interdisciplinary approach to improve oral care

Within the next 15 years, 1 in 5 U.S. residents will be 65 years or older. Just as the effects of aging are not limited to one discipline within medicine, the same is true for dentistry. Special considerations must be made when treating patients in every dental specialty. For this reason, Texas A&M University Baylor College of Dentistry faculty spanning several departments have collaborated to provide lectures and a panel discussion for the 4th Annual Linda C. Niessen Geriatric Dentistry Symposium on May 20.

Here are a few details on the TAMBCD faculty presenters and the subject matter they’ll explore during the symposium.

Dr. David GroganDr. David Grogan, oral and maxillofacial surgery
– The goal of this presentation is to help attendees gain a greater understanding of and ability to recognize the effects of aging on multiple organ systems. The lecture will delve into the role of aging with pharmacokinetics, drug classes and surgery.

Dr. Poorya JalaliDr. Poorya Jalali, endodontics – This session will outline the age-related changes of the root canal system, the pulpal and periapical diagnostic process in elderly patients, and general prognosis and outcomes for this patient demographic.

Dr. Jacqueline PlemonsDr. Jacqueline Plemons, periodontics – Management of oral medicine conditions is of special importance for the elderly population, as dry mouth and salivary dysfunction can often cause oral changes, not to mention negatively impact patient comfort and nutrition. Plemons will recap this condition, as well as treatment strategies for burning mouth syndrome, oral lesions and dermatologic diseases, and more.

Dr. Jorge GonzalezDr. Jorge Gonzalez, Center for Maxillofacial Prosthodontics, oral and maxillofacial surgery – As more and more individuals are living into their 80s and 90s, this presentation will examine special considerations in dental treatment for the older population, including simplified protocol for high-end prostheses. At the same time, discussion will illustrate the importance of assessing each patient as an individual and not merely categorizing by age.

About the Linda C. Niessen Geriatric Dentistry Symposium

Initiated in 2013 by Dr. Helena Tapias, assistant professor in restorative sciences, the annual symposium is geared toward helping dentists address the needs of geriatric patients. It is named in honor of Dr. Linda Niessen, a longtime clinical professor at TAMBCD and now dean of Nova Southeastern University College of Dental Medicine in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

— Jennifer Fuentes