Dental care for the elderly in nursing homes in California has a beneficial impact on residents and the entire health care team. However, the challenge is how to logistically develop, accomplish and implement such a useful program. Most nursing homes do not get daily oral care. Despite the fact that many of the residents have difficulty brushing their teeth due to physical and cognitive limitations, the services are still limited in most nursing homes.
The work of brushing teeth twice a day for each resident can take a lot of time. The reduced cognition, communication and sequencing abilities of the residents can affect the standard of healthcare provided by the staff.
A lot of the residents have resistant behaviors that can escalate to a point of injuring the staff. In the face of such challenges, it is important to educate the staff on the techniques and rationale of good oral care. Nursing homes in California should also invest in the best dental care for the elderly in nursing homes to ensure that the residents get the care they deserve.
Oral health assessment
Oral health assessments should be timed routinely and systematically. During the medical admission evaluation, residents should undergo full oral assessment and examination. The assessment should include examining all nutritional changes, mastication and swallowing issues, periodontal issues, mucosal disease, caries, pain, salivation and more.
It is also important to assess system factors. This incorporates medications, medical problems, communication with the previous residents’ doctors. Part of the overall evaluation is to test the mental and functional capacity of the residents paying specific attention to their skill level in doing oral care activities such as brushing their teeth.
After finishing the initial comprehensive evaluation, appropriate dental care for elderly in nursing homes should follow. If the residents develop oral health signs, in-house evaluation and treatment should ensure to ensure the patients’ well-being.