No one should die from ‘dirty teeth’

By Kelsi Matylewicz/ Benco Dental Social Media Intern

Angie Stone, Owner & Founder of HyLife LLC in Edgerton, WI, has combined her love for the elderly and her dental background into one profession. Her business aims to help improve the oral health of nursing home residents.

Oral care is mandatory at nursing homes, but according to a recent story in GazetteXtra, most staff members don’t have much training — some only get about an hour’s worth.

Stone has 30 years of experience. According to the story, Stone brushes and flosses clients’ teeth, then lines their mouths with xylitol, a natural sugar substitute that makes it harder for bacteria to produce plaque. ( A typical cleaning takes about 15 minutes.)

Her inspiration to start HyLife began with two women: her mother-in-law, Gladys Stone, and her grandmother Helen Schrantz.

The former entered a nursing home with lung disease. Without a dentist or dental hygienist on staff, plaque built up in her mouth. Her lung disease continued to worsen at an alarming rate, despite the antibiotics she took, Stone said. After she passed, Stone knew the two problems were connected and she needed to do something to help.

Schrantz also entered a nursing home late into her life. In two years, she lost 60 percent of her teeth, Stone said. “I buried her with no front teeth,” Stone recalled, “and as a dental hygienist, that haunts me. It should have never happened.”

Photo courtesy: Agri-view. Angie Stone of HyLife oral care services greets George Schmidt, 88, before caring for his teeth at Huntington Place in Janesville.
Photo courtesy: Agri-view. Angie Stone of HyLife oral care services greets George Schmidt, 88, before caring for his teeth at Huntington Place in Janesville.

Stone’s business, HyLife, is still in the beginning stage. The oral care component of the company began last July, and HyLife currently employees 10 caregivers in four Midwestern states and Florida.

Stone’s dream is to have a team of caregivers all over the country in order to take care of this elderly population and prevent death from dirty teeth.

“In the U.S. in 2015, should people die from dirty teeth? No. I don’t think so,” she said. “We’re doing something, and we’re absolutely helping.”

To read the full story: http://www.gazettextra.com/20150425/edgerton_resident_aims_to_tackle_nationwide_oral_problem

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