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dental health and arthritis

jennylynnjennylynn Posts: 101
Hello helpline team :smile:

This is possibly an unusual request, but i was just wondering if you knew of any resources whereby people struggling with their manual dexterity could buy dental aids? because i have arthritis my final year project at uni is going to be on the increased likelihood of people with arthritis developing periodontal disease. As part of this i wanted to develop some guidelines for helping a patient with dexterity problems - but so far i have found nothing! i thought maybe curved handled toothbrushes might be available or aids to make the handle of a brush bigger - but i am really struggling?!
Can you think of a site that may stock such things? do they even exist?!
i know this isnt a problem that i am directly suffering with at the moment, but i'd like to be able to offer support to patients in the future so would really appreciate any advice on the matter.

Thank you,

Jennyx
Jennyx

kittens.jpg?1295453358

Comments

  • WonkylegsWonkylegs Posts: 3,504
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    HI Jenny

    I'm sure the Helplines people will get back to you tomorrow, but I hope you don't mind me butting in!

    I have had problems over the years being able to care for my teeth, and it has taken some time to work out how I can best help myself.

    I have found for me an electric toothbrush has made a big difference, with a larger handle being easier to hold, and the brush does most of the work!

    As for flossing, well that's a different matter!!! I have found that almost impossible, as most flossing equipment is very slim to hold. However, there is a model on the market made by one of the big firms which has helped me in this area, and I can PM you the details if you like?

    I have also found that the 'plastazote tubing' that is sold in mobility shops can be useful for expanding the size of toothbrush handles and for the little interdental brushes that I use. (the tubing comes in a range of hole sizes.

    good luck!!

    WONky

    PS - someone also some time ago mentioned that their dentist suggested using a toothbrush with the handle inserted through a tennis ball as an aid.
  • helpline_teamhelpline_team Posts: 2,019
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Jenny,

    I'm in complete agreement with wonkylegs on this one. Electric toothbrush is the way to go. I finally made it to the dentist last year of many years of odontophobia and she recommended an electric as it requires so much less pressure on the hand and wrist. After initial reluctance I am now a total convert - the brush really does most of the work for you.
    As for any other adapted toothbrushes/dental aids, if they're available then the Disabled Living Foundation will know where to find them: http://www.dlf.org.uk

    Best wishes
    Paul
  • jennylynnjennylynn Posts: 101
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    thank you so much thats really helpful, i want to make up some examples of aids to show my colleagues so thats all really great information.

    Wonky if you have the details of the product you were talking about i would really appreciate it. I had thought about interdental cleaning, as i know that flossettes and floss are useless if your hands are sore or gripping is a problem, i'm really quite suprised that there isnt more on the market for this problem.

    Thank you so much for all your help,

    Jennyx
    Jennyx

    kittens.jpg?1295453358
  • elnafinnelnafinn Posts: 8,043
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Jenny

    I found this information on the net: If you have arthritis or know someone who has and can't easily grasp a toothbrush, insert the toothbrush into a rubber ball or sponge hair curler to make it easier to hold. Wonky was right about the ball suggestion :smile:

    Elna x
    The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything.

    If you can lay down at night knowing in your heart that you made someone's day just a little bit better, you know you had a good day.
  • elnafinnelnafinn Posts: 8,043
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi again Jenny

    Google the Gripit Floss Holder, that may be something like Wonky mentioned.
    Elna x
    The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything.

    If you can lay down at night knowing in your heart that you made someone's day just a little bit better, you know you had a good day.
  • jennylynnjennylynn Posts: 101
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you so much everyone! thats all really helpful :-)

    I just wanted to apologise if i have broken the rules or abused the purpose of the forum by asking this on here. I didnt realise i am not supposed to seek advice as a student for research. I hope i havent trodden on any toes with this, as a person with arthritis i can assure you all my intentions are genuine. I feel that we are neglected a bit as most people associate our condition with denture wearers - and we all deserve the right to try and preserve our teeth too!

    Thank you everyone,

    Jennyx
    Jennyx

    kittens.jpg?1295453358
  • elnafinnelnafinn Posts: 8,043
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Jenny

    I feel that in your case it was totally ok because you joined in November last year, you were unfortunately diagnosed with PA ten years ago, you have posted 59 times and have replied to other people threads on the forum. You are studying to be a dental therapist and I wish you all the very best for the future and may you go far. I do hope that you will keep in touch and let us know how you go on and also continue to help others on the forum, when you have time.

    Elna x
    The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything.

    If you can lay down at night knowing in your heart that you made someone's day just a little bit better, you know you had a good day.
  • jennylynnjennylynn Posts: 101
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you Elna, thats really kind of you. i've ordered the gripit floss holder to have a better look at it - that was a really great find. i have a company sending me some extra grip toothbrushes, and a colleague from a special care facility sending some information on where they buy products. i've also contacted the people who make the interdental brushes in the hope that they may recommend some sort of adaptation. I will of course let you know if anything of value comes out of it.

    Jennyx
    Jennyx

    kittens.jpg?1295453358
  • LotsofpainLotsofpain Posts: 147
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Not sure how easy this would be to hold

    Waterpik®
    Water Flosser
    Model WP-450

    http://www.waterpik.co.uk/oral-health/instruction-manuals/WP-450.pdf
  • valvalvalval Posts: 15,897
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    have enjoyed reading this some great advice thanks for asking this question it been very helpfull had to replace my tooth brush dropped the last one lol and as they were half price at chemist got profecional one the timer lets you know every 30 sec to change section of mouth big help as never pay much attention to time and it much stronger clean val
    val
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