You provide the care your dad needs, but oral care continues to be a stressful obstacle. When it comes to oral care and taking care of your dad’s dentures, he refuses to cooperate. How can you make oral care less of a pain?
Stick to a Schedule
Help him clean his teeth and gums at the same time each day, so that it becomes a routine. If he knows you’ll help him after breakfast and again after dinner, then he’ll expect to experience your help at these times of the day.
Look For Evidence of Ill-Fitting Dentures
Check that your dad’s dentures fit properly. If sores are forming from where his dentures are rubbing, it’s a problem. Not only will it make him less likely to eat a proper meal, but it can also increase the risk of a gum infection.
If you are seeing areas where his dentures have been rubbing, schedule an appointment with his dentist. Certainly, he needs to have dentures that fit properly.
Use Less Invasive Dental Products
Aim for products that make it as invasive as possible. A water flosser is easier to accept than having your fingers in his mouth. Flossing picks are also useful.
Wear medical gloves to keep any lotions or soap residue on your hands from getting into his mouth. Plus, this is a sanitary measure that protects him from your germs.
When you remove his dentures, follow his dentist’s recommended care steps. If he’s supposed to use a non-abrasive cleaner once a week, stick to the once-a-week schedule. If they should be removed and soaked in a denture cleaning product each day, do that.
Maintain Twice Yearly Dental Appointments
Meanwhile, your dad is supposed to see his dentist twice a year. Make sure you stick to that schedule. If his dentist and dental insurance allow three or four visits a year, follow your dad’s dentist’s recommendations.
At the end of an appointment, book the next and note it on a family schedule for others to see. By keeping careful track of his dental appointments, you and other family caregivers can ensure someone is available to drive and accompany him on those days.
Hire a Personal Care Aide to Help Him
Keeping up with your dad’s oral care is tough. He’s not cooperative with you or your brother. Have you considered that it’s the close relationship you have that makes it hard for him to feel comfortable accepting your help on something as personal as oral care?
Personal care at home aides are an ideal solution in cases like this. Your dad doesn’t have a personal connection, which makes it awkward for him. His personal care at home aide can come in, help him with grooming and hygiene chores like denture care, and leave meals and transportation to you.