Improving the oral health status of functionally independent and dependent seniors residing in long-term care facilities through dental hygiene education /
MetadataShow full item record
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the oral health status of residents residing in 2 long-term care facilities and determine if dental hygiene education was required in order to improve their current oral health. The oral health status of 6 independent and 4 dependent individuals residing in 2 long-term care facilities was evaluated. In addition, the current oral health and disease prevention practices employed by 4 caregivers who were responsible for providing oral care to dependent residents in the long-term care facilities were evaluated. Furthermore, an evaluation of the oral care practices of independent residents who were responsible for providing their own care was conducted. Finally, the challenges that caregivers and independent residents faced when performing oral care were determined, and methodological changes were proposed. Using a generic qualitative research methodology, data collection was comprised of semi structured interviews, field observations, and documentation. The oral health status of the residents was reevaluated 3 months later. The findings of this study demonstrated an increase in plaque accumulation, gingival inflammation, and unhealthy gingival tissue colour changes among the residents over the 3-month period. The study revealed that poor oral health among the residents was a result of inadequate oral hygiene care techniques, difficulties accessing oral health care, financial limitations, insufficient care staff, insufficient time for personal care duties, lack of professional development, minimal interprofessional collaboration of health disciplines, and lack of perseverance on the part of the caregivers and residents. Overall, oral health is essential, and maintaining optimal oral health requires increased collaboration and communication between health care providers.