Ed’s inability to move on his own, bathe himself, or dress himself landed him in a nursing home at age 80. Though he did the best he could to take care of his mouth, his condition affected his hands and he was not able to brush effectively. Ed may have traveled down the same path as Gladys, Ida, and Helen, if it were not for a hygienist providing weekly oral care and Xylitol.
Weekly oral care visits were enjoyable for Ed and the hygienist. They visited, flossed and brushed, and managed to give each other a hard time now and again. Before long, Ed’s gums were healthy and they remained healthy. So did his teeth. His gums did not bleed and the plaque on his teeth was very minimal. During the time Ed was receiving oral care services, he was free of dental disease, did not require any treatment from a dentist, and never needed emergency dental care. As Ed’s condition deteriorated, the hygienist was present to provide comfort care for his mouth. And while Ed did move on from this world, he did not die from dirty teeth.