It doesn’t only take a reassuring smile and hug to keep your dementia patients oral health up to par. It takes proper hygiene and oral care products that will specifically help those with dementia or alzheimer’s.
Top Oral Care Products For Dementia Patients
Toothbrush – OK. This may sound ridiculous to even recommend, but it’s true. I cannot tell you how many times I see a dementia patient, with teeth, use a sponge rather than a toothbrush. This is not appropriate for their mouth as a sponge cannot remove the food that gets impacted between the teeth and at the gumline. Please use the proper brush as follows:
- Adult Toothbrush: For patients with teeth. Be sure the bristles are extra soft and there is a tongue scraper on the other side of the head. This helps protect their teeth if they accidentally bite down on the toothbrush.
- Baby Toothbrush: Great to use for those hard-to-reach places, and potentially because a patient’s mouth may be too small for the adult size toothbrushes. More often, I recommend the adult toothbrush over a baby toothbrush.
- Sponge Lollipop: Typically given out at hospitals, this sponge is great only for those without teeth.
AllDay Dry Mouth Spray – This product is wonderful for patients who have a hard time keeping their mouth wet. Dry mouth is typically caused by medications. The more saliva your patient has, the better. Salive is a natural cleanser against bacteria.
Xylitol Gel – Also made by AllDay (Elevate), this gel is a toothpaste made of 44% xylitol, has a great taste, and is meant to be swallowed. This has the consistency of toothpaste and also picks up food particles. This is a great recommendation for those whose patients tend to swallow their toothpaste while brushing.
Additionally, I have a protype created of a toothbrush for those who cannot brush properly. This toothbrush (Chew Chew Train, LLC) will help those who are unable to brush on their own. If you’d like more information on this product, please visit my product page.