When your aging loved one gets new dentures, it is the beginning of a new approach to eating, appearance and care. When the dentures are new or somewhat new, they can be quite painful. It’s especially uncomfortable when eating. Family caregivers and homecare providers can take certain steps to minimize the discomfort and help seniors avoid pain as best they can.
The first thing family caregivers and homecare providers should do is serve the aging adult a liquid diet. Not only are liquids soothing to sore gums, they don’t require chewing. For the first few days after getting dentures, the dentist will recommend liquids that include loose food like pudding, applesauce and oatmeal. Other options include smoothies, lukewarm soup and ice cream. As the swelling in the gums goes down, aging adults will likely experience less pain.
Treating the pain itself is usually done via over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs prescribed by the dentist. There are also topical ointments that aging adults can apply to their gums to dull the nerves and reduce the pain they feel as they get used to their new dentures. Seniors may also find it soothing to have ice or ice pops as well. Hot liquids and foods may enhance the pain, so family caregivers and home care providers should avoid things like hot soup, coffee and tea.
In time, the aging adult will be able to handle small bites of soft food using the new dentures. Aging adults should take their time and not rush into harder foods, even if they are hungry. Soft foods can include things like pasta, bread, bananas, and steamed vegetables. Seniors should try to chew these soft foods using both sides of their mouth for better pressure. This way, they are not putting all the force onto one side or another.
When the dentist says it is fine to move onto more solid foods, aging adults should still avoid tough or chewy food like steak, popcorn, taffy and raw vegetables and hard fruits. They can still take pain relievers as necessary, but the elderly adults ought to be feeling better as each week goes by. If they are still experiencing unusual pain, family caregivers or homecare providers should make a follow-up appointment with the dentist to report it.
With family caregivers and homecare providers to help them work through the pain, aging adults with new dentures will feel comfortable in no time. Not only will dentures help them eat and speak more naturally, but seniors will also feel better about how they look and sound. Family caregivers and homcare providers are a key part in helping aging adults adapt to new dentures.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Homecare Services in Naples FL, call the caring staff at Dial-a-Nurse today. Naples: (239) 307-0033. Ft. Myers: (239) 307-0065.
In 1995 he became Administrator of Dial-a-Nurse nursing agency, the oldest nursing agency in the Southwest Florida succeeding his mother who started the company 37 years ago. He is also President of Nevco, Inc., an educational healthcare training company begun in 1988.
Mr. Wolfendale has worked with the U.S. Department of Commerce on various Missions to improve the quality of life around the world by development of supportive healthcare programs. In 2005 he traveled with U.S. officials and addressed the Italian National Government assisting in the creation of Nurse Education mandates for that Country. In 2006 he was invited and spoke with the National Institutes of Continuing Education in Eastern Europe on healthcare education and developmental mandates, and most recently represented the United States at the European Union in Lake Balaton, Hungary in 2011. In 2014 he traveled with the U.S. Department of State to Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam in an effort to improve caregiver knowledge and training.
Mr. Wolfendale has worked with a number of non-profits in contributing and creating curriculum to improve the quality of life in third-world countries since 2001, and notably created a successful program in Odessa, India that has been modeled in other areas of the world. In his backyard, he has worked with local Goodwill Industries to provide curriculum and training to underserved individuals who have obtained employment as a result of educational training. He was the Congressional appointment to the Governor's purple ribbon task force in 2013, and has worked to educate caregivers in all aspects of Alzheimer's training.