Impact dental health

The Problem

The problem of dental neglect and high levels of unmet dental needs among older people living in care homes has been identified as an area of concern[1].

Key issues regarding dental care include, the need for improved routine oral hygiene, adjustment of loose dentures, and dry mouth. It has been suggested that daily oral hygiene and regular check-ups by a dental professional are needed for all care home residents.

Based on anecdotal learning from the Enhanced Care Home Outcomes (ECHO)[2] study and an earlier piece of work supported by Health Education England Thames Valley (HEETV) about the need to improve dental care, it became apparent that dental needs and neglect in Oxfordshire’s care homes needed to be assessed.