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Br Dent J. 2006 Sep 9;201(5):293-5; discussion 289; quiz 304.

The knowledge of healthcare professionals regarding elderly persons' oral care.

Author information

1
Restorative Dentistry, Liverpool University Dental Hospital, Pembroke Place, Liverpool, L3 5PS. a.j.preston@liv.ac.uk

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The aim of this study was to compare the knowledge and views of nursing staff on both acute elderly care and rehabilitation wards regarding elderly persons' oral care with that of carers in nursing homes.

SUBJECTS:

One hundred nurses working on acute, sub-acute and rehabilitation wards for elderly people (Group 1) and 75 carers in nursing homes (Group 2) were surveyed.

DESIGN:

A semi-structured questionnaire.

RESULTS:

Similar percentages of each group of nurses were registered with a dentist (86% and 88% respectively), although more hospital-based nurses were anxious about dental treatment compared with the nursing home group (40% and 28% respectively). More carers in nursing homes gave regular advice about oral care than the hospital-based nurses (54% and 43% respectively). Eighteen per cent of each group thought that edentulous individuals did not require regular oral care. Eighty-five per cent of hospital-based nurses and 95% of nursing home carers incorrectly thought that dentures were 'free' on the NHS. Although trends were observed between the two groups, no comparisons were statistically significant (Chi-square; level p < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS:

Deficiencies exist in the knowledge of health care workers both in hospital and in the community setting, although the latter were less knowledgeable but more likely to give advice to older people.

PMID:
16960615
DOI:
10.1038/sj.bdj.4813973
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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