A Close Shave To Get Those Teeth Clean

, , , | Healthy | September 10, 2020

It’s my first day working as a care assistant in a home for adults with learning difficulties. Every resident is treated as a member of the family. A more experienced colleague is showing me around.

Colleague: “This is John. He needs a lot of personal care, but he’s a great guy. He’s quite happy and easy to take care of.”

Later, we are putting him to bed and my colleague is demonstrating to me how to clean his teeth. John won’t open his mouth for the toothbrush.

Colleague: “He really doesn’t like the taste of toothpaste. We have to be patient.”

Two minutes later, he still hasn’t opened his mouth.

Colleague: “Would you switch on John’s shaver? It’s on the shelf there.”

Me: “Huh? We haven’t finished cleaning his teeth yet.”

Colleague: “Just switch it on and watch carefully.”

Confused, I switch it on. Then, I look at John to watch the reaction. He grins and opens his mouth wide. My colleague puts the toothbrush in and cleans his teeth without issue.

Colleague: “You see, he hates getting his teeth cleaned, but he loves getting shaved. The sound of the shaver is enough to distract him. Getting shaved is his reward for letting us clean his teeth.”

I was amazed that something so simple would work! Several months later, I enjoy working with him.

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