Dental Home Care for Those Living with Dementia
When someone has dementia, understanding what they’re thinking can be challenging. People living with dementia have trouble communicating and may not be able to tell us when they’re in pain.
Dementia is a brain disease.
Dementia is not a normal part of ageing. It affects memory, thinking and behaviour. It’s a brain disease that worsens over time, but there are ways to help you manage it.
Dementia can affect your ability to:
- Remember things from the past (for example, where you live or what happened last week)
- Plan for the future (for example, organizing events in your life)
- Find words when speaking or writing
- Understand simple instructions given by others.
Dementia can affect behaviour, mood and personality.
Dementia can affect behaviour, mood and personality. This can cause changes in the way you interact with others or your ability to cope with everyday life.
Behavioural symptoms include:
- Restlessness or agitation (being unable to sit still)
- Loss of interest in activities that the person previously enjoyed with dementia
Mood symptoms include:
- Depression – feeling sad most of the time
- Anxiety – worrying about things that are not a problem for other people.
Dementia is progressive, which means it gets worse over time
Dementia is a progressive disease. It worsens over time and can’t be cured but can be treated. It’s not contagious, and it’s not a mental illness.
People with dementia have a higher risk of developing oral health problems.
People with dementia have a higher risk of developing oral health problems. This is because the condition can affect the ability to clean teeth, eat and drink safely, communicate with caregivers and understand how to care for their teeth.
- The inability to clean your own teeth: It’s not uncommon for people with dementia to lose interest in personal hygiene or become unable to perform simple self-care tasks such as brushing their own teeth or flossing due to poor coordination or confusion about where the toothbrush goes (or even what flossing means).
- The obstacles for caregivers: Caregivers often have difficulty maintaining adequate home dental care for their loved ones because they’re burdened by other responsibilities like feeding, bathing and dressing themselves each day–not to mention providing emotional support during times of frustration.
- Oral issues can be experienced by plaque and food debris buildup on teeth because brushing is not done regularly!
People with dementia may not be able to communicate their discomfort effectively to their caregivers.
People with dementia may not be able to communicate their discomfort effectively to their caregivers. They may be unable to understand what is being said or when something is wrong, which can lead to frustration and increased pain levels that the person has difficulty expressing.
It’s important that you know how your loved one communicates before they develop dementia and what kinds of changes might occur as the disease progresses.
Oral health problems can lead to more serious infections and pain for those with dementia.
If you have a loved one with dementia, you may notice they are experiencing oral health issues. This is not uncommon, as those who suffer from these conditions tend to have more difficulty caring for their teeth and gums than those without the diseases. For example, someone who has been diagnosed with dementia will often forget what foods are healthy for them or how much water they need per day–which makes it difficult for them to maintain good oral hygiene habits like brushing their teeth regularly. Additionally, people with dementia often experience confusion when it comes time to brush, which results in increased plaque buildup on their teeth, which increases the risk of developing gum disease.
Karen at Roving Dental Hygiene can help prevent these problems by providing regular checkups so that issues can be identified early on before they become severe enough that they visit an emergency room.
Maintaining good dental hygiene is important for everyone, especially those with dementia.
Maintaining good dental hygiene is essential for everyone, especially those with dementia. Dental care can help you maintain oral health and prevent or manage tooth decay or gum disease. Karen, who works with people with dementia, will take extra time to explain procedures verbally or by hand motions so that the resident understands what is happening, which helps them feel more comfortable during treatment.
We know that caring for someone with dementia can be challenging. But good dental hygiene is essential for everyone, especially those with dementia. Suppose you need to figure out how well your loved one’s teeth are cared for. In that case, we recommend calling Karen at Roving Dental Hygiene about setting up regular checkups and cleanings at home or in the long-term care facility so she can monitor any changes in their oral health status over time.