Since aging can cause any number of dental issues, it’s not uncommon for seniors to end up wearing dentures later in life. Though modern dentures may be almost indistinguishable from regular teeth, they require special maintenance. Improper care of dentures may cause your elderly loved one to develop infections, cavities in his or her remaining teeth, or mouth sores. Because elderly immune systems are often weak, it’s important to prevent these issues from happening. To keep dentures sparkling clean and bacteria free, your loved one should follow these essential tips.
Rinse after Eating
Though a quick rinse won’t get rid of all bacteria on dentures, it should remove large pieces of food. Getting rid of any bits of food stuck in dentures after each meal keeps bacteria levels down by removing potential food sources for bacteria. Simply swishing water around in the mouth isn’t enough to clean dentures. Your loved one needs to remove and rinse them after each meal. You can also use denture cleaner or mild dishwashing liquid while cleaning them after each meal to hinder bacterial growth.
Use the Right Cleaning Tools
As with normal teeth, plaque and food can build up on dentures, causing stains and encouraging bacterial growth. Improper cleaning tools can cause microscopic scratches and pocks on dentures that become ideal hiding places for bacteria and germs. If the dentist has recommended a specific type of brush and cleaning solution, use those to clean your loved one’s dentures. Otherwise, use a soft toothbrush and a denture cleaning solution or mild dishwashing detergent to clean them. Never use toothpaste, which often contains abrasive particles meant to whiten teeth, not to clean dentures.
Regularly cleaning their dentures and other activities of daily living may be challenging for some seniors to handle on their own. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of home care service. Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives.
Don’t Let Dentures Dry Out
If dentures are allowed to dry out, they’ll lose their shape and fail to fit properly. Therefore, when they’re not being worn, dentures should be placed in a glass of cool water or denture soaking solution that won’t allow anything to build up on the surface. Talk to your loved one’s dentist to find out what the best soaking solution is.
Cognitive issues such as dementia and Alzheimer’s can cause seniors to have difficulty keeping dentures clean and maintaining proper oral hygiene. Certain age-related conditions can make it more challenging for seniors to age in place safely and comfortably, but Garland live-in care experts are available around the clock to help seniors manage their health. Whether your loved one is living with dementia or recovering from a stroke, you can trust the professional live-in caregivers from Home Care Assistance to enhance his or her quality of life.
Soak the Dentures Overnight
The porous surface of dentures can harbor bacteria that aren’t easily removed with a simple scrubbing. However, soaking dentures overnight in a denture soaking solution kills up to 99.99 percent of all germs and bacteria. Being able to sleep without dentures also allows seniors to rest their mouths and prevent sores that can result from constant wear. Make sure to rinse dentures with water before putting them back in the mouth, since some denture soaking solutions contain chemicals that may induce vomiting.
If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elder care. Garland Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives. To create a customized in-home care plan for your loved one, call us at (469) 573-4213.