Root caries is one of the most significant dental problems among older adults today. Many studies have demonstrated that older adults are at greater risk for developing root caries. Here we examine what risk factors older adults are prone to and explain how they contribute to higher rates of oral disease, in particular root caries. The elderly are at risk for root caries due to dentures, lack of dexterity, a shift from complex to simple sugars, and poor oral hygiene. Decreased salivary flow and its manifestations with other social/behavioral and medical factors may provide a more comprehensive explanation to a higher frequency of root caries in older adults.