Beyond comfort: Oral hygiene as a critical nursing activity in the intensive care unit
MetadataShow full item record
Background: The role of oral hygiene in maintaining the health and well being of patients in the intensive care unit (ICU) is indisputable. This importance is not reflected in the body of research related to ICU practice. While a number of studies have examined oral hygiene practices in oncological patients there is significantly less attention devoted to these practices in the critically ill. Aim: This paper has two discrete yet interrelated aims. Firstly, in relation to current available evidence and based on a sound knowledge of oral physiology, identify barriers to effective oral hygiene and subsequent effectiveness of the most commonly used and recommended methods of providing oral hygiene in the critically ill population. Secondly, informed by the critical review, identify recommendations for practice and future intervention studies. Findings: To date, there is no definitive evidence to determine the most appropriate method of oral hygiene including the use of beneficial mouth rinses. Barriers identified in this review to providing optimal hygiene include: (1) mechanical barriers and equipment issues, (2) perceptions of the importance of mouth care and empathy with patient discomfort by nurses, (3) altered patient sensory perception and discomfort and (4) difficulties in patient communication. In spite of these challenges opportunities for collaborative research and increasing expertise in nurse researchers creates a climate to derive solutions to these factors. Conclusions: It is clearly evident from this review of oral hygiene practices in intensive care that the need for ongoing research is of paramount importance. ICU nurses undeniably require rigorous research studies in order to inform their practice in the provision of oral hygiene for critically ill patients.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Systematic literature review of oral hygiene practices for intensive care patients receiving mechanical ventilationBerry, A.; Davidson, Patricia; Masters, J.; Rolls, K. (2007)Background: Oropharyngeal colonization with pathogenic organisms is noted to be a contributing factor to the development of ventilator associated pneumonia in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Oral hygiene, although ...
Durgude, Y.; Cocks, Naomi (2011)There has been little research on the provision and adaptation of oral care for patients with dysphagia in nursing homes. This study collected data via a questionnaire specifically on the knowledge of oral hygiene and the ...
Improving health outcomes by preventing intensive care related infection in Malaysia Intensive Care Unit (INVEST study)Soh, Kim Lam (2012)Ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP), catheter-related blood stream infection (CRBSI) and pressure ulcers (PU) are well recognized complications in intensive care units (ICUs). Many of these are preventable but can also ...