Oral hygiene is important throughout the golden years, even when seniors have lost their natural teeth. Seniors with missing teeth can still maintain good oral hygiene by following these simple tips.
Get Regular Dental Exams
Typically, seniors should visit the dentist every six months. Getting regular oral examinations can prevent diseases such as oral cancer or allow the dentist to diagnose such diseases. If your senior loved one suddenly experiences changes in taste or smell or has persistent oral pain, schedule an appointment with his or her dentist to rule out potentially serious health concerns.
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Brush Dentures Daily
Regular brushing is essential to good oral hygiene. If your loved one wears dentures, rinse them under running water to remove food particles after meals. Your loved one should also brush his or her dentures once a day, using denture-friendly toothpaste and a soft toothbrush to gently scrub the dentures on all sides, and rinse them with clean water.
Your loved one should avoid using whitening toothpaste and other abrasive products on his or her dentures. These products can cause scratches that trap bacteria and cause stains. Mouthwash is a good addition to your loved one’s daily oral hygiene routine. Choose a mild mouthwash that kills germs for fresher breath throughout the day.
Remove Plaque Daily
Gently brushing the mouth removes plaque and increases circulation to the tissues in the mouth. Your loved one should use a soft-bristled toothbrush and non-abrasive toothpaste to gently scrub plaque away and rinse his or her mouth with clean water after brushing. If your loved one’s mouth is sensitive, he or she can use a washcloth to gently remove plaque.
Remove and Soak Dentures
Dentures increase the risk of oral infections, especially when they irritate the mouth. Oral yeast infection, or thrush, is also very common among those who wear dentures. To prevent oral infections, rinse your loved one’s mouth with salt water after meals and after removing the dentures at the end of the day.
Your loved one should take his or her dentures out at the end of the day and use effervescent tablets to clean the dentures while they soak overnight. Even with perfect hygiene, infections are possible. Contact the dentist if your loved one has white spots, redness, pain, or sores in his or her mouth.
Living with a serious health condition can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Windermere seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more.
Opt for Healthy Lifestyle Choices
Eating a healthy diet, drinking plenty of water, and avoiding tobacco and alcohol are all good ways to boost oral health and enjoy better oral hygiene. If your loved one has difficulty chewing some types of food, encourage him or her to drink smoothies that contain a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables.
A daily multivitamin can also meet your loved one’s nutritional needs if he or she has difficulty chewing, but ask the doctor to ensure vitamins are right for your loved one’s health. With regular dental exams, healthy lifestyle choices, and daily cleaning, your loved one can enjoy better oral hygiene during the golden years.
Seniors may require assistance with meal preparation and making healthier lifestyle choices. If your aging loved one needs occasional help with bathing, grooming, cooking, or other basic household tasks, or if you need time to attend to important personal matters, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of live-in and respite care. Altamonte Springs seniors can maintain their independence while living at home with the help of our reliable respite caregivers. To learn about our comprehensive, high-quality elderly care plans, give us a call at (407) 604-0506 today.