Oral health is an issue that everyone, big or small, should pay attention to. The health of organs such as teeth, gums, palate and tongue in the mouth also refers to general oral health. Especially teeth and gums wear out over time due to microorganisms and secretions in the mouth. Tooth decay, formation of wounds in the mouth, gum diseases and difficulties in chewing are a few of the problems in the mouth. Oral health is an integral part of body health and deterioration of oral health can adversely affect other organs. Caries infection, especially in the teeth, can spread to other parts of the body and cause various diseases. Organs such as the heart, kidneys, stomach and intestines can be affected by the infection. This may increase risks such as cardiovascular diseases, chronic respiratory diseases, gastrointestinal diseases, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, rheumatism, diabetes, and premature birth in women. In order to protect the oral mucosa and prevent the formation of infection in conscious or unconscious patients who are bedridden or who cannot clean their mouths on their own, in an issue that can cause such serious consequences, oral and dental cleaning should be done by a companion with specially produced oral care kits.
There are medical products specially produced for the oral care of patients. These are called oral care kits. It can be used in homes and hospitals. Usually sold in sets; It consists of cleaning solution, cotton/sponge swabs and moisturizer. Apart from this, there are also sets of solution-impregnated cotton swabs only. The length of cotton/sponge sticks may differ depending on the brand. All hygiene procedures must be observed for the health of both the companion and the patient in every care process. Hands should be washed each time and examination gloves should be used during the procedure.
The immune system of patients who are bedridden or unable to feed themselves becomes weak because they cannot get enough natural nutrients. Teeth are adversely affected due to lack of vitamin D, calcium and phosphorus, which are especially important for dental health. In addition, the fact that bedridden patients mostly have to stay indoors means that they cannot benefit from sufficient sunlight. This means that the vitamins necessary for bones are not synthesized in the body. The necessity of being in a closed area all the time causes the patient to feel bad both psychologically and negatively affects bone and dental health. On the one hand, it causes the immune system to collapse. Nutritional problems, immune collapse and bad psychology can seriously affect the oral health of patients. Caries on the teeth and wounds in the mouth can cause infection.
An infection can quickly spread throughout the body from a neglected bruise or a small wound in the mouth. This problem can reveal different ailments in a patient whose immune system is already weakened. In addition, it can cause the development of cancer cells and scar formation in the organs of the nutrition system. The oral health of a patient in need of care must be protected very well. Oral care should be done more often than body care. The patient's companion should follow the care time and provide oral hygiene with appropriate products. It is recommended to repeat the oral care procedure every six hours. If there is a denture or other apparatus in the mouth, it should be removed before the procedure as it may complicate oral care. If regular oral care is not performed in patients who are permanently hospitalized, teeth that are not used can wear out and rot faster. This situation also seriously affects patients who use their teeth for feeding.
Especially, the decrease in the quality of nutrition can cause the patient to weaken psychologically and physiologically. Inadequate nutrition can weaken the immune system and cause sores in the patient's mouth. These wounds can become infected and cause more harm to the already immunocompromised patient. There are also psychological problems experienced by patients who need someone else for their personal care. Some patients may think that they are a burden to the people around them. Experiencing hygiene problems on top of the psychological problems he or she is experiencing can reduce a person's resistance to diseases and hope for survival. If oral care is done regularly, both the patient will feel better and the wounds that may occur in the mouth will be prevented.
Oral care needs of the patient should be determined in advance and appropriate products should be supplied. The prices of oral care sets are not very high. For this reason, it is possible to try several different brands of products. Thus, both the quality of the product and the benefits it provides can be seen. Whichever brand is more beneficial for the patient can be continued with that brand. Of course, not every product should be bought and applied to the patient, products of high quality and well-known brands should be preferred. Since it contains chemicals, products produced under the stairs should be strictly avoided.
The cleaning and moisturizing solutions included in the set consist of special chemical components. It does not adversely affect health. Even if swallowed, no problems occur. However, care should be taken against the risk of choking on the patient's throat. These solutions are applied with oral care sticks called swab. Oral care sticks are disposable and commercially available. The cleaning solution in the set destroys the microorganisms in the mouth and provides freshness. Humidifier is used to prevent problems caused by dry mouth. Dry mouth is more common in diseases such as Parkinson's, diabetes and Alzheimer's. In addition, keeping the mouth of the unconscious patients constantly open causes dryness of the inside of the mouth and lips.
Dry mouth can also cause some health problems. Problems such as bad breath, wear of the tissue and lips in the mouth, rapid development of wounds and infections, and acceleration of tooth decay affect especially bedridden patients. The use of the humidifier in the oral care set helps to prevent these risks. The freshness created by cleaning and humidification allows the patient to feel more comfortable psychologically.
Oral cleaning of the patient can also be done using a toothbrush and paste. In such a case, the patient should be able to control the swallowing function so that the liquids applied into the mouth do not get into the patient's throat. In addition, after the companion brushes the patient's teeth, the patient himself should be able to rinse his mouth with water and spit out. If the patient can control the swallowing function, spit, and use the neck and mouth muscles, oral care can be done by brushing his teeth. Otherwise, the patient may experience the danger of suffocation.
Oral care sets are also very easy to use. Sufficient amount of maintenance solution is put into the measuring cup that comes out of the set. The entire oral cavity, teeth, gums and tongue are cleaned by absorbing the solution onto a cotton or sponge swab. Then some moisturizing solution is placed on the stick; It is applied to the mouth and lips. Since these solutions are produced from chemicals suitable for health, they do not cause any harm. There are also ready-made sticks produced in a solution-impregnated form. This type of product can be used immediately as it comes ready out of the package. Care sticks are disposable.
If the patient is conscious and can open his mouth on command, the procedures to be performed must be explained from the beginning and permission must be obtained from the patient in order to show that the patient is valued. Thus, the companion will be in cooperation with the patient and the care process will be easier. If the patient is conscious but cannot open his mouth spontaneously, the patient should not be forced. If forced, traumas may occur in the mouth and face. In addition, this forced situation may cause the patient to feel bad. In unconscious patients, the mouth should be opened without forcing. Actions that may cause physical harm to the patient should be avoided. In every oral care procedure, the inside of the patient's mouth should be examined as if it were an examination. It should be checked to see if there is caries on the teeth, bleeding or redness in the gums, fungus or sores in the mouth. In such cases, the patient's physician should be consulted first for treatment.