Effects of aging on periodontal ligament and supporting structures of teeth

Periodontal problems in old age is the most common reason for exfoliation of teeth. And Periodontal ligament and the supporting structures of the teeth are effected by increasing age in many ways. Here is a list of clinical and Histologic changes with increase in age.

age changes in periodontal ligament and supporting structures

Gingival epithelium:

  • Thining and decreases keratinization
  • Increase in epithelial permeability
  • Flattening of rete pegs
  • Migration of junctional epithelium to a more apical position on root surface
  • Width of attached gingiva decreases

Connective tissue:

  • Coarser and denser gingival connective tissue
  • Collagen content increases
  • Rate of collagen synthesis decreases

Periodontal ligament:

  • Number of fibroblasts decreases
  • Decreased organic matrix production and epithelial cell rests


  • Increase in cemental width by 5-10 time
  • Increase in width greater apically and lingually
  • Accumilation of resorption bays explains the finding of increasing surfa irregularity

Alveolar bone:

  • More irregular pdl surface of bone and less regular insertion of collagen fibers

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