Health, Post Radiotherapy, tongue cancer

Mouth care….


With many conditions that affect mouth opening or sensation, brushing your teeth can incredibly painful or physically difficult . I’m hoping by sharing the things that help me, and in turn this may help you. I’ve come up with some tips that work for me. It’s a lot of trial and error but I have a few suggestions.
So first off my first tip is
Rinsing your mouth after eating. This may help with mainly debris left behind – yes this sounds a bit gross but it’s a fact that you might get something stuck somewhere. So just pop to the bathroom and rinse and swish with water – no none had to know.

Toothbrushes

I actually have three different toothbrushes I use on a daily basis now these are my chosen three . All are available from the supermarket.

  • The first one one is a baby toothbrush, literally the toothbrush you buys for babies when they have their milk teeth. It’s small it soft and get right to the back without opening your mouth loads so you can reach what you couldn’t do otherwise. Yes it’s a soft brush but it’s either that or nothing so to me that’s a win. For me, because of not having a tongue on one side of my mouth I can’t tell if there’s any food stuck. (Colgate Smiles Junior 6+ Years Soft Toothbrush LINK )
  • Number two, my zigzag toothbrush this one it is a bit rougher than the one above but this one is used differently. This one is for bits that may have stuck in my teeth, between my teeth it’s not really the for brushing. It’s more to just clear and debris and it only takes a matter of seconds. ( Colgate Zig Zag Medium Toothbrush LINK )
  • Lastly I have my electric toothbrush and I have the the circle head one and it works really well as it’s quite gentle. I’ve known people to use the children’s version of it because they prefer it. (Oral-B Vitality Plus Cross Action Electric Toothbrush Powered By Braun LINK )


A few other tips would be – if you’re finding your toothbrush is too hard physically a simple hack is run it under the hot tap.This will make it softer and it’s a temporary solution but it works. To be honest, for me, brushing my teeth with warm or hot water is a lot nicer than cold water because my mouth is so sensitive so it just feels better. I don’t know the reason we brush our teeth with cold water!

Toothpaste

Toothpaste.. this is a HUGE issue for those post radio therapy! Our mouths are so so sensitive and mint is like wasabi to me personally. Here are a few ones that I have tried and a few suggested by the Head and Neck cancer groups I am in.

  • OraNurse Unflavoured Toothpaste – I’ve used this one and really good. I understand it was initially designed for people who are autistic but it’s readily available. Here’s a link for a good price LINK
  • Biotene toothpaste – this is one I have used on and off for year – its slightly minty – but not like regular mints. Its great for dry mouth too. LINK
  • Sensodyne Pronamel Daily Protection Toothpaste – again one I’ve tried and it’s pretty good – a bit too strong flavour wise for me but I know many use this with great success. LINK
  • President in berry flavor. – I understand this is only availble on prescription but I have seen it mentioned several times.
  • Children’s toothpaste – its that simple – they come in fruit flavours they come in super mild mint – and they come in little tubes so you can try a few before you find one that works. I use this one LINK
  • Coconut toothpaste (this one I’ve not seen, it it has been mentioned in groups a few times ). Coconut Oil works by deeply cleansing and effectively removing impurities. Dr Organic Coconut Oil Toothpaste has been expertly formulated to help whiten, cleanse and protect your teeth. LINK
  • Xeros Dentaid® toothpaste is a daily use toothpaste for optimal oral hygiene in people with dry mouth or xerostomia. It provides maximum hydration for people with dry mouth and/or reduced saliva, who are more vulnerable to bacteria, caries and bad breath and who can have difficulty carrying out daily activities such as talking, eating and swallowing. Gluten-free and suitable for people with celiac disease. I haven’t used this but again it has been suggested to me quite a few times and is non-irritant. LINK
  • Toms children’s toothpaste – again this is a suggestion that’s been made on some of the groups . LINK

Dry Mouth

  • Biotine Oral Balance Gel – now this one is a little odd as the gel stays in your mouth but it’s great if your prone to waking in the night with dry mouth LINK
  • Mouth wash – I’ve only really used the biotine – Biotene Dry Mouth Mouthwash Moisturising LINK
  • XyliMelts For Dry Mouth LINK
  • Boots Expert Dry Mouthwash  LINK

Lastly -A Waterpik..

The Waterpik Water Flosser cleans away debris that other devices miss. It cleans deep between the teeth and below the gumline to remove up to 99.9% of plaque from treated areas.

Clinically proven benefits
The Waterpik Water Flosser is clinically proven to provide significant oral health benefits. an easy and more effective alternative to string flossing, air flossing and inter dental brushes. These are readily available and there are lots of choices – the way I see it is any of these options is better than not brushing?! LINK

Waterpik water flosser - Mouthcare - My Canver and me

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