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My 90-year-old dad has mild dementia and needs a dentist to pull out a molar tooth that has been loose for awhile. Finding a dentist is difficult. In his younger years, he only saw a dentist when there was a problem. I'm concerned about reactive behavior if he becomes overly stressed. I also have no idea how long healing will be. There is no pain, but when that moment comes, I really would like to have a dentist ready to call, one who lots of experience working with patients of advanced age. I would appreciate any ideas, experiences, or referrals (La Habra area of California).

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Very happy it worked out for you both. Another hurdle over!
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I'm so glad it went so well! Dentists who work well with older patients are worth their weight in gold! My mom had a great dentist who rebuilt a couple of her teeth that just broke off when she was in her mid-90s. He was fantastic.
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Our oncologist warned that mthr's teeth might fall out like her hair did from her cancer surgery. Because mthr suffered delusion from her sedation, doc suggested that we allow her teeth to fall out naturally. It bothered me a lot to see her wiggle one like she was a little kid, but they were not infected. Ugh.
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Sunnygirl has a great suggestion. I didn't think of that. ALs should know of a place where residents go for dental care. These places should know how to handle people with dementia better than regular dentists.
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Is your dad still in Assisted Living? I'd speak with the staff there. Sometimes, there is a place that many of the residents may go for dental care, if that practice has a lot of senior patients. The one that my LO sees is great. She has dementia, but, they work with her and are very understanding. She's had 3 extractions with no trouble at all. And she used to be terrified of a dentist. I think she must have forgotten that. But, they give her an anti-anxiety pill just before the appointment and she's fine with it. I'd keep an eye on his problem tooth though. If it gets infected, it might be more difficult to treat.
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Thank you for responding Worried Spouse and Shane. Someone recommended a dentist who we ended up going to. All went well. Dr Irwin numbed Dad up in the usual way. As he gently moved the tooth, he communicated with Dad to make sure he would feel little pain. He patiently worked with my Dad and injecting more numbing agent if needed. When he finally pulled the tooth, Dad was surprised because he felt nothing. The tooth really was ready to come out, because Dad was able to eat his enchilada dinner an hour later.
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Worried spouse is correct. My husband has severe dentist phobia and requires sedation when having extensive dental work (including extractions) and had to be cleared by his PCP including an EKG before they would proceed.
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I think your dentist can mildly sedate your dad - either with a pill or injection. I know it can be done, but the question is: Will the dentist want to risk liability with a 90-yr old patient?
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