Order the importance of oral care paper
. Perform hand hygiene and put on gloves if assisting with
oral care, and/or other PPE, if indicated.
2. Identify the patient. Explain procedure to patient.
3. Assemble equipment on overbed table within patient’s
4. Close the room door or curtains. Place the bed at an
appropriate and comfortable working height, usually
elbow height of the caregiver (VISN 8, 2009).
5. Lower side rail and assist patient to sitting position if per-
mitted, or turn patient onto side. Place towel across
patient’s chest. Raise bed to a comfortable working
6. Encourage patient to brush own teeth, or assist if necessary.
a. Moisten toothbrush and apply toothpaste to bristles.
b. Place brush at a 45-degree angle to gum line and brush
from gum line to crown of each tooth. Brush outer and
inner surfaces. Brush back and forth across biting
surface of each tooth.
c. Brush tongue gently with toothbrush.
d. Have patient rinse vigorously with water and spit into
emesis basin. Repeat until clear. Suction may be used as an
alternative for removal of fluid and secretions from mouth.
7. Assist patient to floss teeth, if appropriate:
a. Remove approximately 6 of dental floss from container
or use a plastic floss holder. Wrap the floss around the
index fingers, keeping about 1 to 1.5 of floss taut
between the fingers.
b. Insert floss gently between teeth, moving it back and
forth downward to the gums.
c. Move the floss up and down, first on one side of a tooth
and then on the side of the other tooth, until the surfaces
are clean. Repeat in the spaces between all teeth.
d. Instruct patient to rinse mouth well with water after
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