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1-11. ORAL HYGIENE

Oral hygiene (mouth care for cleanliness) is essential to the care of all patients, as the mouth normally harbors many bacteria. The patient's resistance may become so lowered during illness that severe infections of the mouth tissue may result. Mouth breathing, restricted oral fluids, elevated temperature, and other conditions that may accompany illness cause drying and cracking of mouth tissues. Such conditions aid the development of infection. When a patient is too ill to care for his mouth and teeth, the medical specialist must help him or must perform the procedure for him. Ambulatory patients may need reminding to carry out self-care measures.

 

David L. Heiserman, Editor

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Revised: June 06, 2015