Alzheimer’s Disease and Denture Care

Alzheimer's Disease and Dental Care

If your loved one has Alzheimer’s disease and wears dentures, you may need to provide assistance to them. In the earliest stages of the disease and possibly up to the middle stages, this assistance may include providing them with reminders, coaching them through proper denture care, and even offering support.

As your loved one transitions into the late stage of the disease, it is quite possible that you will have to completely take responsibility for their denture care and other oral health needs. In this guide, you will learn some strategies for properly caring for the dental health of your loved one.

Make Contact with a Dental Professional

The first step in caring for the dental health of a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease is to contact a dental professional. It is likely that your loved one has an established provider.

Make an appointment with that provider. Once at the appointment, explain the Alzheimer’s diagnosis and create a care regiment for your loved one’s dental health and denture care. The disease is progressive and can advance quickly.

The care regimen will ensure that dental health issues do not develop and result in further health complications. There should be – at least – one denture checkup a year. Additionally, you should request that your loved one’s name be added to the acrylic on the dentures in case they misplace them and others find them.

Denture Care Steps

The next step for caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s that wears dentures is to learn how to properly care for those dentures.

The following outlines some basic measures that should be taken. You may obtain additional steps and information from their dental care provider:

  1. After your loved one has completed a meal, their dentures should be removed and thoroughly cleaned. You must be careful to avoid breakage. In case of accidental drops, you should place a soft cloth in the sink.
  2. A toothbrush and warm water should be used to clean the food debris from the dentures. When brushing, use only a toothbrush that has soft bristles and clean the dentures very gently.
  3. When your loved one takes a nap or goes to bed at night, you should ensure that the dentures are taken out of the mouth and that they are placed in a denture soaking device that includes a gentle denture cleansing agent.

Denture Fit

Individuals with Alzheimer’s disease eventually lose their ability to communicate effectively. If your loved one wears dentures, you should monitor them closely to ensure that they continue to fit.

Dentures that do not fit right could result in aesthetic issues, sore spots, issues in chewing, and even the onset of infections in the mouth. Evaluate the mouth for sore spots, red areas, swollen areas, exposed gums, and bad breath.

You should also watch your loved one to see if they display signs that they are in pain or uncomfortable.

In some cases, it may be far better to have dental implants (as opposed to dentures). This would eliminate worries about losing the device, chewing issues, sore spots and much more.

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