Your Proactive Caregiver Advocate: Dr. Cynthia Speaks!

Caregivers and Dental Health: A Mission to Become Proactive

A mission, according to Webster, is a specific task with which a person (or group) is charged to execute. As many of you know, I was charged with the care of my mommy. I share many stories in my book: From the Lens of Daughter, Nurse, and Caregiver: A Journey of Duty and Honor. Some tasks were known, like bathing, dressing, feeding, medications, potty time, and bedtime shenanigans.

These tasks were essential components in the care of another. Look closely, what is missing from the list? What could you add to this list?

One of the most important tasks in the world of proactive caregiving is health awareness. Have you taken dental health seriously? Before a problem or situation arises, open and say Ahh. That’s right, look around the food reservoir cavity.

When taking care of seniors, paying attention to the ‘not so obvious’ can ward off problems. For example, if you notice eating behaviors has changed, consider dental health. It could be that teeth and gums have problems or for those wearing dentures, if they are not fitting correctly, this can create nutritional health issues. Poor dental health can create other health issues. For example, a dental infection can cause sepsis without treatment. Sepsis is triggered by a known or unknown infection, and it can cause death. So, as we look at ways to be proactive, let your mission be to consider dental health when caring for your loved one.

Dr. Cynthia J. Hickman is author and speaker. Her book: From the Lens of Daughter, Nurse, and Caregiver: A Journey of Duty and Honor shares caregiving tips.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store