What should I expect taking a late stage Alzheimer's patient to the dentist? - AgingCare.com

What should I expect taking a late stage Alzheimer's patient to the dentist?

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My mother is 65 with late-stage Alzheimer's. I don't know how long it's been since she's gone to the dentist. She has an appt on Monday and I don't really know what to expect.

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When you take mom explain to the doctor about the ALZ. Watch the whole procedure. If she looks like she is getting too upset, stop the appointment. Say mom cannot take anymore. We will have to reschedule for the rest....My momwas 85/86 when I took her to dentist....I thought she stroked out. It was extremely terrifying to see my mom go through that seizure.......
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STAY WITH MOM THE WHOLE APPOINTMENT. I didn't and the dentist used the high power water pick on her. I thought the dentist would remember NOT to use that water torture thingamiggie..Well she did not remember, and I did not stay. I'll keep it short,,, my mom ended up having a seizure in the ER. It was too much for her to handle....ER doctor asked me why I was so concerned about having her teeth cleaned at her age? I felt stupid...
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I don't really know if I'm willing or if she is able. One big concern is that I'm her conservator and I don't wanna be legally liable somehow for not taking her to the dentist! And I also don't want the thing to "take her out" to be a rotten tooth. To be perfectly honest I was scared about not making an appt and now I'm scared of the appt. I'm terrified of the worst case scenario in my head: the dentist does the exam and says, "all her teeth need to come out, insurance doesn't cover it, and by the way, you're gonna be arrested for letting it get this bad."
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Are you willing and is she able to go through all the repair work the dentist might find? If not and she doesn't seem in any discomfort why do it? I read somewhere that "If you aren't willing to do the treatment, don't do the test". There's a good point to that and maybe that should apply to dentistry too. Sometimes it's so hard to make that medical/dental decision. It gets driven into us what is ideal care ie: go to the dentist twice a year for cleaning, get a mammogram done yearly etc. Unfortunately, when we care for a family member with dementia we just don't live in that ideal world.
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We had to get my mom with vascular dementia to the dentist because she was in pain. The transfer to the dental chair was dicey, and she was fussy, but the dentists were great and got 'er done.

If she can't verbalize to tell you she's in pain and it looks like it could be painful and she's irritable or won't eat or chew what she otherwise could, you might want to try it. If she has been to a dentist before, so it is not an unfamiliar experience, she might be OK with it.
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Hahaha! Thank god you asked that. That makes me feel so much better.

She just hasn't been in a long time and I kind of want to know what's going on. She has a couple cracked teeth. She doesn't seem to be in any pain but, I don't know, it seems like the responsible thing to do.
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In a loving way, I ask why does she need to go to the dds if she is late stage? It is an acute problem of just a cleaning?
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