What’s a simple, daily oral hygiene plan for people with Parkinson’s?

Kathleen Donohue - Ask the Parkinson's Expert

Kathleen Donohue is a speech-language pathologist who works for Boulder Community Health’s Home Care Department. She’s been a speech therapist for 30 years and has been working with people with Parkinson’s for the past ten.

In this video, Kathleen walks you through what to do on a daily basis to keep your mouth (and you) healthy.

Oral Hygiene Plan

I. Positioning

  • Sit or stand in front of a mirror
  • Give yourself a sturdy base of support

II. Three times a day

  • Rinse your mouth out by doing a swish and spit (get most of the food particles out of your teeth before you brush
  • Brush with an electric toothbrush (it does the work for you)
    • Brush one tooth at a time
    • Set a timer for each quadrant

III. Once a day

  • Floss between your teeth
    • Choose a method and tool that works for you
    • Get help to figure out the best method for you
  • Use a soft toothbrush to brush mouth tissues
    • Brush your tongue, roof of your mouth, gums, cheeks, etc.
    • Disrupting the tissues in your mouth will help you maintain healthy flora
  • Rinse with alcohol-free mouthwash
    • Biotene for Dry Mouth

IV. Three to four times a year

  • Visit your dentist for regular cleanings
  • The healthier your mouth is, the healthier you are

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Comments (1)

Excellent demonstrations of how to breathe better, speak better, etc. My husband has had Parkinson’s for 14 years, will be 90 next week, and has just moved into an Enhanced Assisted Living – no longer in an apartment with me and my computer. He doesn’t speak much. This video may be too late for him, but I will try to get a computer to him so we can watch it together. Thank you for doing this. I regret that his P.D. doctor didn’t tell us about this sooner.

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