The shingles vaccine is growing in popularity. When first introduce in 2008, about 8% of older Americans got immunized. In 2019, more than 1 in 3 did.

This trend has been influenced by financial subsidies, by growing confidence among the prescribers, and by public awareness and opinion. Despite the vocal campaign of the anti vaxxers, the aging community clearly prefers to avoid shingles.

The same is true for the most common chronic and expensive disease — poor oral health. When advised by the healthcare professional that sore and bleeding gums threaten overall health, our experience is the vast majority of adult patients will ask the right questions and take the appropriate prevention — Prevora. Indeed, the uptake of Prevora exceeds the shingles vaccine when the conditions are right.

Sore and bleeding gums can complicate the management of diabetes, COPD, chronic kidney disease, heart disease and mild cognitive impairment.

The appropriate forum for preventive oral healthcare is the physicians’ practice, the consult room of the independent hygienist, and the wellness clinic of the retirement residence. In these venues, as with vaccines, there are no conflicts from expensive surgical care.