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Providing Mouth / Oral Care to the Patients

Oral hygiene is very important for patients and must be taken seriously. Any infection in the mouth can be very painful in the later stages. You must diagnose the infections while providing oral care to the patients and inform the nurse immediately. You need to extend your help to the unconscious patients or for those who are not able to clean their mouth themselves due to a physical disability or any other reason. Mouth cleaning on a regular basis not only prevents the transmission of germs but also helps in faster recovery of the patients. Before starting this activity, you must first greet the patient and let him/her know about the entire procedure of mouth cleaning.

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Steps to be Followed to Provide Oral Care to the Unconscious Patients

Step 1 – Rinse your hands properly with antiseptic soap and lukewarm water.

Step 2 – Wear gloves after drying your hands.

Step 3 – Wrap the patient’s chest with a towel.

Step 4 – Raise the level of the bed on one side so that the patient is in partial sitting position.

Step 5 – Turn the head of the patient towards you in a very gentle manner.

Step 6 – Open his mouth with the help of a tongue depressor.

Step 7 – With the help of toothbrush and toothpaste, start cleaning the patient’s mouth. Clean gums, tongue and teeth in this process.

Step 8 – When you are done with the cleaning part, suction the saliva and toothpaste from the mouth of the patient.

Step 9 – Bring the patient back to the comfortable position

Step 10 – Dispose of gloves and wash hands properly.

Steps to be Followed to Provide Oral Care to the Conscious Patients

Step 1 – Begin with rinsing your hands with antiseptic soap and lukewarm water.

Step 2 – Dry your hands and don gloves.

Step 3 – Wrap a towel around the chest of the patient.

Step 4 – Raise the level of the bed to about 30 degrees from the ground, but not more than that.

Step 5 – With the help of a toothbrush and toothpaste, clean the patient’s mouth. Also clean teeth, tongue, and gums. Do not take a large amount of toothpaste as the patient may swallow it.

Step 7 – While you make him brush the teeth, watch if there is any infection or ulcer in the mouth.

Step 8 – If the patient is capable of rinsing his mouth himself, then ask him to take a little water and spit it out so that all the toothpaste left in the mouth comes out.

Step 9 – Bring the patient back to the comfortable position.

Step 10 – Dispose of the gloves and wash your hands properly after the entire procedure.

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List of Things that Examiner Notices when You Demonstrate this Skill

  • Whether you have wash hands before start giving oral care to the patient.
  • If the patient is positioned in a proper way.
  • If you raise the level of the bed to an appropriate height from the ground.
  • Whether the things you use for cleaning teeth, are clean and sterilized.
  • Whether you direct the patient on how to rinse his mouth properly.
  • Whether you make the patient dry his mouth properly.
  • Do you dispose of gloves and wash your hands properly in the end?

Expert’s Tips

  • Show your dedication while assisting the patients in cleaning their teeth. This will make them comfortable and help recover fast.
  • Check the mouth of the patient properly so that there are no traces of infections. If you find any problem, inform the nurse without delay.