Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Dental Specialties for Dental Assistants 10 - Geriatric Dentistry

LEVEL 01 - Year 1 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Oral Rehabilitation and Community Care

DESCRIPTION This study-unit provides students with knowledge of the management of older adult patients attending the dental clinic, especially those who are physically and/or medically compromised and/or cognitively impaired. The medical, dental and social aspects related to older adult patients will be discussed.

Study-unit Aims:

The aims of this study-unit are to introduce the dental surgery assistant student to the discipline of Geriatric Dentistry. It will discuss:

1. The changes in the local population demographics;
2. The relationship between geriatric care and oral health, general health and socioeconomic factors;
3. The various branches of this field, as well as the equipment and techniques used during patient treatment;
4. The role of the dental assistant as part of the Dental Team, in the management of geriatric patients.

Learning Outcomes:

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

- Recall knowledge and theory gained from other study units and put it into practice for the management of older adult patients;
- Discuss the fundamentals of geriatric care as related to medical, dental and social situations;
- Discuss the various settings in which dental care may be provided to older adult patients;
- Discuss the role of the dental surgery assistant, as a dental professional, in managing challenging situations with older adults having physical, medical, cognitive and social conditions, as well as in dealing with their formal or informal carers;
- List barriers to care for older adult patients and recognise potential solutions to these problems;
- Recognise the need to liaise with different members of the dental and health care team when difficult circumstances arise in geriatric dentistry;
- Explore theoretical knowledge in geriatrics/gerodontology through further reading and research.

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

- Assist other members of the dental team in carrying out dental procedures related to gerodontology;
- Explain different adaptive aids to older adults who lack dexterity;
- Organize patient transport and scheduling of treatment sessions as per patient’s requirements;
- Assist carers in the transfer of wheelchair bound older adults to the dental chair;
- Communicate effectively and professionally the concepts of oral health, and general well being to older adults and their carers.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

Main Text:
Title: Geriatric Dentistry: Caring for Our Aging Population Paperback
Author: Paula K. Friedman
Edition: 1st
ISBN-10: 1118300165
ISBN-13: 978-1118300169

1. Title: Geriatric dentistry : a textbook of oral gerontology
Authors: Poul Holm-Pederson, Harald Loe
ISBN-10: 871-6096-606

2. Title: The Essentials Of Health Care In Old Age 2E
Author: Gerald Bennett
Edition: 2nd
ISBN-10: 0340613726
ISBN-13: 978-1-4051-5364-5

ADDITIONAL NOTES 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 & Practicum

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Online Examination (2 Hours) SEM2 Yes 100%

LECTURER/S Maria Luisa Gainza-Cirauqui
Nikolai Attard
Carmen Caruana
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.