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Teaching Objective:

The student nurses are able to carry out the oral hygiene for conscious patient


  1. Toothbrush: small enough to reach back teeth; soft and rounded with non-frayed rows of nylon bristles
  2. Dentifrice: patient’s choice, preferably one containing fluoride; special paste for dentures
  3. Cup of water
  4. Emesis basin or sink
  5. Dental floss ; regular or fine, waxed or unwaxed, depending on patient’s need
  6. Tissues or towel
  7. Mouthwash if desired

Terms to knowBRISTLES


A Dentifrice is a paste, liquid or powder used to help maintain acceptable oral hygiene. There have been many dentifrices produced over the years, many focusing on clever[citation needed] marketing strategies to sell products, such as offering whitening capabilities. The most essential dentifrice recommended by dentists is toothpaste which is used in conjunction with a toothbrush to help remove food debris and dental plaque. Dentifrice is also the French word for toothpaste.

Emesis Basin


Dental Floss

Dental floss is either a bundle of thin nylon filaments or a plastic (teflon or polyethylene) ribbon used to remove food and dental plaque from teeth. The floss is gently inserted between the teeth and scraped along the teeth sides, especially close to the gums. Dental floss may be flavored or unflavored, and waxed or unwaxed.


  1. Wash your handsSEMIFOWLER
  2. Collect necessary equipment. Assist patient with the arrangement of equipment if necessary
  3. Assist patient to sink or provide privacy if care is to be given in bed
  4. Help patient into a comfortable semi-Fowler position or sitting position
  5. If dentures are present, help patient remove them if necessary. Place denture in the denture cup
  6. Inspect surface of mouth for any abnormalities. Ask patient about usual oral care routine
  7. Elicit any concern, comments, or questions patient may have about his oral health status
  8. Determine oral hygiene needs based on findings
  9. Assess patient’s need for teaching. Consider educational level, physical, emotional, and mental state, previous experiences, cultural differences, etc.
  10. Assess patient’s physical condition. Consider diagnoses, treatments, fluid status, drugs, diet, level of comfort, or pain
  11. Assess patient’s ability to care for himself


  1. Wash your hands
  2. Request that patient open mouth wide and hold emesis basin under chin
  3. Direct the bristles of the toothbrush toward the gum line for all areas to be brushed. Rationale: action will remove food particles from gum line and stimulate the gums
  4. Keep the brush positioned over only two or three teeth at a time. Use small rotating movements to cover the outside surfaces of all back teeth
  5. Using the brushing method described above, clean the inner surfaces of all back teeth
  6. To clean the flat chewing surfaces, use a firm back and forth motion
  7. To clean the inner surfaces of the front teeth, use the bristles on the end of the toothbrush and rotate the brush back and forth across the teeth
  8. Lightly brush all areas of the tongue- this will improve the breath
  9. Rinse the patient’s mouth thoroughly with water
  10. Inspect oral cavity and repeat brushing if necessary
  11. Floss thoroughly, using approximately 12 to 15 inches of floss loosely wrapped around one finger of your hands
  12. Floss between each tooth by looping floss around each edge of the tooth and sliding floss down to the gum line
  13. Rinse patient’s mouth thoroughly with water
  14. Wipe off patient’s mouth and chin
  15. Wash patient’s brush, rinse and put it and paste away and return additional equipment
  16. Check to see patient’s comfortable
  17. Wash your hands

Taken from Sandra Smith, RN, MS Clinical Nursing Skills


1 Comment

  1. geri says:

    miss…siplah punya blog kaya gitu bisa buat anak2…belajar bahasa inggrisnya ga boring…!!!tapi klo bisa lebih bnyk lg ya…makasih

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