Oral health; the gateway to hydration, nutrition, and medication

Yasmin Allen @missdiplom and Nikki Patel @NikkiPatel_

Yasmin is currently working as a clinical fellow in leadership and management in the HEE, her work includes promoting collaboration between health care professionals and the dental team, unscheduled dental care and improving oral health for older people in community and hospital settings. Yasmin also works clinically in the out of hours emergency dental care service on weekends.

Nikki is a community dental officer who looks after the oral health of dependant elderly or medically compromised individuals. She is currently pursuing her Fellowship in Clinical Leadership at Health Education England in London, where she is involved with projects and strategies to overall improve the oral health of the population and develop new and improved ways of working.

 

Toothbrush_20050716_004Cast your mind back to when you opened your eyes this morning. Then think of how your mouth felt at that time; I bet it was dry, uncomfortable, had a horrible taste and you most likely felt some plaque roughening the surfaces of your teeth. Now think about how your mouth would feel if you hadn’t brushed your teeth after waking up. Or you didn’t brush them for a week after, or even a few weeks after. Your mouth and teeth will now almost certainly feel dirty, odorous, uncomfortable and in turn it may affect your confidence and well being. This is what happens to dependant elderly people far too regularly than we would like to admit. These are the people whose personal care, including their hair care, foot care, nails care and continence care is being delivered as part of their overall support. Yet there is often one part of personal care which is frequently overlooked- the mouth. Continue reading

Geriatricians as leaders and managers to improve care

Louise_Southern_HEE_1Dr Louise Southern is a registrar in General Medicine and Care of the Elderly in the north-east. In this blog, she discusses her experiences of the National Medical Director’s Clinical Fellow scheme.

Last year I became the first trainee in geriatrics selected onto the National Medical Director’s Clinical Fellow scheme, and spent 12 months on ‘out of program experience’, completing this Fellowship, hosted by the Faculty of Leadership and Management. As this year’s recruitment process is now underway, I’ve been reflecting on what made me apply, and how it has affected my subsequent practice.

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