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Ciência & Saúde Coletiva

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FERREIRA, Raquel Conceição; SCHWAMBACH, Carolina Wolff; MAGALHAES, Cláudia Silami de  and  MOREIRA, Allyson Nogueira. Dental care and oral hygiene practices in long-term geriatric care institutions. Ciênc. saúde coletiva [online]. 2011, vol.16, n.4, pp.2323-2333. ISSN 1413-8123.

This study evaluated the activities of dentists, dental care and oral hygiene practices in the long-term care institutions of Belo Horizonte (Minas Gerais, Brazil). A semi-structured questionnaire was handed out to the coordinators of 37 philanthropic and 30 private institutions. The data was compared by the chi-square and Fisher's Exact Tests. 81% of the questionnaires were answered. The majority of the private (74.2%) and philanthropic institutions (87%) do not have a dentist (p=0.21). The location, period of existence, type institution kind and number of residents weren't factors regarding the presence of a dentist (p>0.05). 67% of the philanthropic institutions with equipped consultation rooms had dentists, though there were none when there was no consultation room. Even without consultation rooms, 13% of the private institutions had dentists. When necessary, 69.6% of the philanthropic institutions refer the elderly to public health centers, while 58.1% of the private institutions refer them to their family dentists. A higher percentage of the private institutions adopted systematic oral hygiene procedures (p=0.01), with a considerable divergence of treatment reported. There is a need to include a dentist on the health staff in the institutions and for systematization of oral hygiene practices.

Keywords : Integrated healthcare for the aged; Oral hygiene; Long-term care institutions for the elderly.

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