What’s Happening to Granny’s Teeth?
It used to be the voice of your mother or grandparent asking, “Did you remember to brush your teeth?” But with those people advancing in their years, a role reversal may have come about. Whether as a result of stroke, Alzheimer’s, or other health complications, the dental care of your loved ones may now be in your hands, and the question asking up to you.
Whether it’s you or another health care provider looking after your loved one, here is a statistic that should raise your awareness of a possible problem.
A study conducted by the National Center for Biotechnology Information in which the habits of 63 home care workers for the elderly or handicapped were followed. Upon being interviewed, 96 percent of those caregivers said it was a necessary part of care-giving to provide for the daily oral health of their patients?
So Granny’s daily oral hygiene seems to be taken care of!
Not So Fast!
Well, good intentions are a great start. But after investigating the real-life work habits of those 63 home care providers, it was discovered that only 11 percent actually put their good intentions of providing oral hygiene care for their patients into daily practice.
Help Granny’s Teeth Stay Healthy
Whether you’re the healthcare provider, or your loved one is in a long-term care facility, make it your priority to ensure their dental health care needs are being met. Ask yourself:
- At the point of being put to bed at night, are soft, easily removable food debris still present in their teeth?
- Have dentures or removable bridges been removed and cleansed?
- Are some or all natural teeth now gone but without replacement?
- Does she/he have broken, loose or carious (cavity-ridden) teeth?
- Is gum tissue swollen or bleeding? Are abscesses, ulcers or rashes apparent anywhere in the mouth?
- Are they experiencing problems with chewing, or reporting facial pain?
- Do they take medications that cause dry-mouth side-effects?
Your Dentist Can Help!
Besides providing dental check-ups, treatments, and professional cleanings, your dentist can help demonstrate how to brush and care for someone else’s teeth. Let’s work together to keep the healthy smiles of you and your loved ones! For any dental work in Elgin, be sure to get your Granny in to see Dr. Dean Lodding. Schedule an appointment today!