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Beware of poor dental hygiene in nursing homes

When looking for signs of nursing home neglect, it’s easy to focus on the big issues and miss the little things. You’ll look for bedsores or unexplained bruises, for example, or you’ll keep an eye out for mood changes. These things are very important, but some experts warn that you should also look out for the little things, like poor dental hygiene. These issues can lower a person’s quality of life and may even lead you to larger problems.

For example, one woman told her story, saying her father lived in a nursing home. He had dementia, so he couldn’t do everything for himself. After a few months, she noticed that his toothbrush looked unused. It’s not just that it looked like he’d missed a day, but that it was covered in dust.

Clearly, no one had helped him brush his teeth in a long time. She didn’t say anything at first, but started brushing them for him when she came over at lunch.

Then her father started talking about how he’d had a serious headache that would never go away. She finally talked to the staff and got them to take him to a dentist. What they found was that his issues were far more serious than just a lack of hygiene. One of his teeth had actually split into two pieces, and one of those pieces had gotten jammed into the roof of his mouth.

Every issue won’t be this serious, but her story shows why people need to look for the little things and not just the big, obvious issues when considering neglect in a nursing home. If you want to know more about your legal options to help your loved one, our website has a lot of useful information.


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