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CARENOTES | Past Carenotes | Let's Talk

Carenotes

Welcome to CareNotes. In this special section we will feature a reader's letter and provide an opportunity for an interactive exchange that will help find some answers and possible solutions to concerns. If you wish to respond to this letter, simple follow the link provided at the end of the letter and add your comments and thoughts to our CareNotes Board.

This Week's Carenote - 06/28/11

Hi Gary,
 
I get the FCG newsletter and really enjoy it.  Thanks for making available such an outstanding resource for caregivers.  Momma is almost 90 and has Alzheimer’s.  She'd brush her teeth and rinse out with mouthwash for a while.  Then she'd allow us to do it.  Now, she just bites down on the toothbrush and swallows the toothpaste and mouthwash.  We give her lots of liquids and fruit like apples and pears to crunch down on.  She still is eating well for the time being.  However, food is lodged in her teeth.  She needs a good cleaning.  She sometimes holds water/liquid in her mouth.  I believe she's trying to swish the liquid in her mouth to clean it.  I know it must be very uncomfortable for her.
 
I called her long-time dentist to find out if there was a special procedure for treating such patients.  He has no clue.  Her doctor didn't have a solution either; just trying to clean her teeth while she's medicated.  What does one do?  Can she be sedated and then have her teeth cleaned?  Is there is a specialty dentist out there that deals with this problem?  I'm sure it must be pretty common.  I can't believe we're the only ones going through this.
 
Any help would be most appreciated.
 
M


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