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    What Nursing Homes Should Know About Oral Health

    As adults get older, it’s not uncommon for them to enter assisted living facilities or nursing homes to receive additional care. As you’re looking at options for your parent or loved one, it’s important to keep in mind that in addition to overall health, staff should be attentive to residents’ oral health as well, even for residents who may not have all or any of their original teeth.

    Here are a few questions you should ask as you’re considering different residential care options:
     

    • Are dental hygiene habits emphasized at least once a day?
    • Is the staff trained in basic oral health care?
    • Is the staff trained to recognize oral problems?
    • Are on-call dental professionals available?
     
    Family members can also help homebound seniors or those in nursing homes schedule regular dental appointments. Even older adults who are missing some or all of their teeth should schedule checkups so the dentist can watch for signs of disease and administer regular cleanings.[1]