Date of Award

Summer 1991

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Dental Hygiene


Dental Hygiene

Committee Director

Pamela P. Brangan

Committee Member

Michele L. Darby

Committee Member

Marion Welliver

Committee Member

Raymond Leinbach

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.D46H37


The purposes of this investigation were to identify: 1) what preventive oral health services were provided by nurses' aides to nursing home residents, 2) how frequent preventive oral health services were performed by nurses' aides, 3) who nurses' aides reported abnormal or suspicious findings detected in the resident's mouth, 4) what factors discouraged and encouraged nurses' aides performance of oral health services, and 5) how nurses' aides rated their oral health knowledge of services they performed. The study population was comprised of a random sample of 40 percent of nursing home facilities in southeastern Virginia. A 14-item questionnaire was administered to nurses' aides employed at 11 (79 percent of sample) nursing home facilities. Data were analyzed using the Statistical Analysis System (SAS). Frequency distributions and percentages were tabulated for discrete, nominal, and ordinal scaled data. Results suggest that nurses' aides employed in southeastern Virginia nursing facilities typically perform preventive oral health services such as toothbrushing, mouthrinsing, and denture cleaning procedures for nursing home residents. The majority of nurses' aides indicated that patient cooperativeness was a major factor that encouraged or discouraged the performance of oral health services. Nurses' aides typically reported suspicious and abnormal findings detected in residents' mouths to the nurse in charge of shift. The majority of nurses' aides rated their oral health knowledge of denture cleaning and toothbrushing as excellent. However, a large percentage of nurses' aides rated their oral health knowledge of saliva substitutes and flossing as poor.


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