Inability to rinse - brushing teeth

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Simone19

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Thank you in advance for reading and responding to this question.

I brush my mom’s teeth every night with a suction toothbrush. The toothpaste doesn’t bother her, but rinsing is a problem. I hold up a cup to her mouth and try to give her a sip of water. She either shoots out the water immediately or lets it dribble out. Sometimes, she starts coughing and choking, which is obviously the most concerning to me. Do you have any suggestions for how to rinse in a safer way? Thanks!
 

lgelb

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When you say "suction toothbrush," are you referring to the disposable toothbrushes that can be hooked up to a suction machine using standard tubing that comes with the machine? If your mom does not have a suction machine, her doc or clinic can order one, as it is often used to get rid of excess saliva/mucus.

If the rinsing bothers her, I wouldn't try. You can wipe her mouth/tongue with a damp cloth. Also, see this thread for other options.

There is also a standalone Korean suction toothbrush that attaches to its own bag, but I don't think it's marketed in the US.
 

affected

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I would do a few extra rounds in the mouth repeatedly rinsing the toothbrush between instead of rinsing as Chris would have choked. I would lay a towel across his front, he would have his head slightly down and any fluids would just dribble onto the towel so that he wouldn't have a choking event.
 

Simone19

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Yes, my mom's suction toothbrush is a disposable toothbrush that hooks up to a suction machine.

Okay! Thank you both so much for the suggestions and for the link to the thread!
 

T45

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I used mouth swabs purchased on Amazon. We would brush with a pediatric toothbrush, suction the saliva and toothpaste with the suction machine and yankaur, then rinse with three or four swabs dipped into diluted mouthwash while suctioning with the yankaur. You can just rinse with the rinsed off toothbrush too. We liked the swabs because it helped exfoliate the lips. Avoid pouring fluids into her mouth, coughing means she’s likely inhaling (aspirating) the liquid and could lead to aspiration pneumonia. Adaptations are part of the diagnosis and finding what works best for each afflicted person is the goal. Best wishes to you and your mother
 

Simone19

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Thank you so much for your suggestions! We actually just started suctioning with the yankaur the other day and my mom is liking it! Definitely worth trying the swabs and the rinsed off toothbrush as well. Thank you!
 

JimInVA

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We used an herbal foam free toothpaste for my wife, Darcey. When done, I would squirt some water into her mouth, let her roll it around in her mouth and then lean her forward. Once forward, with a towel already across her chest, she'd spit into a small glass. The toothpaste (which I got on Amazon... text me for a link if you can't find it and want to look into it) made a huge difference in keeping her from chocking while brushing her teeth. I hope you are able to find what works best for the two of you!

My best...

Jim
 
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