Santa Monica College Teaching Geriatric Deaf Patients how To Brush Their Teeth Presentation

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Topic: Teaching geriatric deaf patients how to brush their teeth

  1. Person with deaf in the U.S.
  • 9% of the population has hearing loss
  • Approximately around 500,000 people use sign language to communicate
  • Most patients who are deaf avoid the Dentist due to communication issues leaving them susceptible to dental problems
  • If they have a dentist nearby due to communication issues it prevents the patient from being treated.
  1. Ways of Communication
  • Lip reading
  • Sign language
  • Writing on paper
  • Videos with subtitles
  1. Maintain oral health
  • Must brush your teeth and floss at least twice a day. Brush for at least 2 minutes and not aggressively. It is also recommended to use mouthwash as well.
  1. How to brush your teeth
  • Video with subtitles on how to brush your teeth and sign language performer on video
  • Video Sample starting at 17:48, URL: 

Links to Scholarly Articles;

  1. How to communicate with them?



LEZZONI, Lisa I., et al. “Communicating About Health Care: Observations from Persons Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing.” Annals of Internal Medicine, vol. 140, no. 5, 2004, pp. 356–62,….

2. Bergeron, F., Berland, A., Demers, D., & Gobeil, S. (2020). Contemporary Speech and Oral Language Care for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Children Using Hearing Devices. Journal of Clinical Medicine, 9(2), 378.

Fageeh & Mansoor (2020) state over 1.5 million people suffer from hearing impairment globally. Approximately 13% of adults from 18 and above years experience difficulty in hearing (Fageeh, & Mansoor, 2020).

Ways of communication

Written instructions are important for adults; dental hygienists can use brochures and pamphlets to educate geriatric patients on brushing and flossing, which means oral health education can be provided using visual aids; this could entail attractive information. Dental hygienists can also use YouTube videos to teach patients with hearing loss to brush and floss their teeth. The videos should entail the correct ways of brushing and flossing. They can also use lip reading and sign language. Pamphlets containing pictures depicting the correct brushing and flossing methods and instructions. Similarly, dental hygienists can help teach brushing and flossing using sign language.

Maintaining oral health

They are shown videos that they should brush their teeth twice daily using fluoridated toothpaste. They should be shown to brush teeth for at least 2 minutes.

How to brush teeth: Video (Oral Health Education in American Sign Language)

  • Summarize video
  • Brush your teeth every morning and night for 2 minutes
  • Brushing with fluoride toothpaste
  • Fluoride helps strengthen your teeth and more resistant to acids made by bacteria
  • Brush your teeth with toothbrush at 45 degrees angle toward to the gumline
  • Brush in a small circular motion, not in a large circular motion
  • Touch the gumline with your toothbrush
  • Start from upper right to left, then to lower left to lower right
  • Brush the chewing surfaces
  • Brush your tongue to get rid of bad breath
  • Brush your tongue in a back and forth motion


Fageeh, H. N., & Mansoor, M. A. (2020). The effectiveness of oral hygiene instructions in sign language among hearing impaired adults in Saudi Arabia. Special Care in Dentistry, 40(1), 41-48.

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