The dentist is one health care provider your senior might have been avoiding. That doesn’t mean that it’s a good idea for her to do that, though. It helps if your senior knows what she’s going to have done at the dentist’s office and what types of questions they’re likely to ask her.
Her Dentist Will Want to Know about Changes
One of the things your senior’s dentist is going to want to talk about are any changes that your senior is experiencing. If your elderly family member has been keeping up with dental visits, this might not be as big an issue for her. But if she’s been lax about going, her dentist needs to know what she’s experiencing and feeling. Things like changes to your senior’s ability to taste foods and drinks also matter. If your elderly family member is experiencing any pain or sensitivity, she should make sure to mention it.
Her Dentist Might Ask about Problems Swallowing
Something that might surprise your senior is that her dentist might want to know more about whether she’s having trouble swallowing or chewing. These issues might seem to be more of a concern for her doctor, but they may have roots in dental issues. Your elderly family member’s dentist can help to narrow down possible causes and may even have solutions to offer.
X-rays and a Thorough Cleaning
Even if your elderly family member has dentures, x-rays are a way for her dentist to spot changes in her jaw and any remaining teeth. They’re an important diagnostic tool and they should be updated every so often. If your elderly family member hasn’t had a cleaning in a while, this can take longer than she might expect. Plaque buildup on teeth can calcify, making it more difficult to remove. If your senior wears dentures, she should bring them with her so her dentist can assess how well they fit.
She May Need to Come Back
Your elderly family member may need to go back sooner than she expects. If she’s having work done on her dentures or if her dentist finds anything that needs additional work, like a cavity that needs filling, that might mean another trip. Your elderly family member may not be excited about that idea, but getting those return visits out of the way when they’re necessary helps her to keep her mouth as healthy as possible.
Managing dental care at home on her own may be getting more difficult for your senior. Elder care providers can help. They can assist with dental care or even take over if it’s become that challenging for your senior.
If you or an aging loved one is considering senior care in Ashburn, VA, please contact the caring staff at Assisting Hands today. (703) 782-3655.
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