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How to Keep Your Elderly Loved One’s Teeth and Gums Healthy

The risk of developing dental problems increases with age, and many seniors have health conditions that can complicate their oral hygiene routine. When providing elder home care Las Vegas seniors can benefit from, you can help keep your elderly loved one’s teeth and gums in top condition by using the following strategies.

Keep Up with Dental Exams

Seniors sometimes skip dental appointments due to scheduling and transportation conflicts. Set up a calendar to keep track of your loved one’s appointments and arrange for transportation if necessary. Regular exams are the best way to catch minor problems before they develop into serious issues.

Watch for Ill-Fitting Dentures

Over time, changes in your loved one’s gums and mouth may require his or her dentures to be refitted or relined. Mouth sores, refusal to wear dentures, and problems eating and speaking are all signs your loved one’s dentures may need to be assessed by a dentist.

Protect Against Dry Mouth

Elderly people who take certain medications are prone to dry mouth. Due to the lack of saliva, bacteria in the mouth can multiply and lead to cavities. Talk to your loved one’s doctor and dentist about possible causes and treatments for dry mouth. Encourage your loved one to stay hydrated, use moistening mouthwashes, and avoid substances that cause dry mouth such as alcohol.

Provide Oral Hygiene Support

If your loved one has arthritis or muscular weakness, he or she may lack the dexterity needed to properly brush and floss. In this situation, it may be helpful to use an ergonomic toothbrush or water flosser. Seniors with Alzheimer’s and dementia may sometimes forget to complete their oral hygiene routine. For those seniors, an alarm or reminder from a dementia caregiver in Las Vegas can be beneficial. Although it is always best to encourage independence, seniors with severe health conditions that limit their mobility may need manual assistance with their oral hygiene routine.

Some seniors may not be able to take proper care of their teeth and gums due to a chronic health condition. For instance, if your loved one has Parkinson’s disease and the symptoms make it difficult for him or her to maintain effective oral hygiene, specialized Parkinson’s care in Las Vegas may be helpful. To learn more about how in-home care services such as this can promote your loved one’s quality of life, reach out to Home Care Assistance at 702-550-3185. One of our knowledgeable Care Managers would be happy to answer your questions and schedule a no-obligation consultation.