Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Special Care Dentistry and Gerodontology

LEVEL 02 - Years 2, 3 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Faculty of Dental Surgery

DESCRIPTION This study-unit is designed to provide students with an in-depth knowledge of patients with restricted access to oral health services due to special needs or age-related factors. The relationships of patients’ special needs and their relationships with Dental Hygiene Practice will be discussed.

Special Needs Dentistry - The knowledge and skills necessary to provide high quality care to medically compromised and special needs patients shall be covered in detail in this study unit. The importance of the development of personalized treatment plans and techniques together with special reference to the inter-disciplinary nature or their care shall be stressed.

Gerodontology –The physiology of aging and the management of challenges associated with the dental care of the elderly will be discussed. The principles and problems involved in providing dental care to institutionalised patients will be explored.

Study-unit Aims:

The aim of this study-unit is to provide the student with a thorough understanding of the dental management of patients with special needs (mental, physical, medical, social) and the geriatric patient and their care in different environments.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

• discuss the role of dental hygiene services as part of a professional team managing patients with physical, behavioral, emotional, developmental and acquired conditions in various clinical and community based- settings;
• state the potential barriers such patients encounter in their access to dental care;
• identify the different medical conditions recognizing the need for liaison with the patients’ physician;
• discuss various oral health-related side-effects of medical conditions and/or medications.

2. Skills
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

• discuss the role of the dental hygienist as a member of a professional team for patients with physical, behavioral, emotional, developmental and acquired conditions in various clinical and community based- settings;
• identify and minimize potential barriers of patients' access to dental care;
• Iientify the concerns associated with the different medical conditions and liaise with the patients’ physician prior to treatment;
• customize patients' treatment plans according to the various periodontal side-effects of different medical conditions and/or medications.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

- Dental Management of the Medically Compromised Patient [Paperback] James W. Little DMD MS (Author), Craig Miller DMD MS (Author), Nelson L. Rhodus DMD MPH (Author), Donald Falace DMD (Author), James W. Little (Author), Donald Falace (Author), Craig Miller (Author) ; Publication Date: March 25, 2002 | ISBN-10: 0323011713 | ISBN-13: 978-0323011716 | Edition: 6.

- Textbook of Geriatric Dentistry [Hardcover] Poul Holm-Pedersen (Author), Harald Loe (Author) Publisher: Wiley; 2nd edition (January 30, 1997) ISBN-10: 8716105338; ISBN-13: 978-8716105332.

- Geriatric Dentistry. Holm, Pedersen, Harald, Lowe ISBN: 87-16-09660-6.

ADDITIONAL NOTES In order for students to be awarded an overall pass in the study-unit, they need to satisfy the following conditions:
• obtain an overall pass in the Written Examination and Logbook Components; and
• obtain a mark of at least 45% in the Oral Examination.

Attendance to scheduled sessions, inclusive of lectures/tutorials, practical, laboratory and clinical components is compulsory. Students who do not attend at least 90% of the scheduled sessions will not be allowed to sit for any of the assessment components mentioned below.

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture, Independent Study & Placement

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Logbook [See Add. Notes] SEM2 No 10%
Oral Examination [See Add. Notes] SEM2 Yes 40%
Examination [See Add. Notes] (2 Hours) SEM2 Yes 50%

LECTURER/S Carmen Caruana
Gabriella Gatt
Alexander Schembri

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.