Mouth Care Protocols

  1. I have recently been oriented to work as a casual nurse on an inpatient palliative care ward. Many of our patients suffer from dry mouth and I am wondering if any hospice nurses would like to share what their agency's mouth care protocols are. I am familiar with the use of oral swabs, both the glycerin and lemon ones and the green spongy ones. I have heard that these are not ideal as they can dry the patient's mouth more. I also remember using mineral oil in the past on medical floors. Thanks.
    •  
  2. Visit Patience911 profile page

    About Patience911

    Joined: May '01; Posts: 22
    Registered Nurse

    5 Comments

  3. by   angieRN
    We don't have a particular protocol, but the lemon glycerin swabs are horrible in my opinion. If the patient has any sores they can definitely irritate them, they do dry, and I think they taste horrible. If I was dying and someone put one of those in my mouth, I would not be a happy camper. We encourage families to use the unflavored denti-tips (green spongy) with cool water and to do it frequently to alleviate dry mouth. I always encourage use of a chapstick/lip treatment to prevent chapped lips as well. Just remember no vaseline with O2!
    Angie
  4. by   aimeee
    We supply the pink or green spongy swabs. I haven't seen or heard of mineral oil used and I would be afraid it would interfere with absorbtion of sublingual medications which are often needed by that stage in the process.
  5. by   saribeth
    Quote from angieRN
    We don't have a particular protocol, but the lemon glycerin swabs are horrible in my opinion. If the patient has any sores they can definitely irritate them, they do dry, and I think they taste horrible. If I was dying and someone put one of those in my mouth, I would not be a happy camper. We encourage families to use the unflavored denti-tips (green spongy) with cool water and to do it frequently to alleviate dry mouth. I always encourage use of a chapstick/lip treatment to prevent chapped lips as well. Just remember no vaseline with O2!
    Angie
    Hi Angie...could you please elaborate on the O2 and vaseline????? It's certainly not anything to do with aspirating is it!!! Thanks Janie
  6. by   angieRN
    Quote from saribeth
    Hi Angie...could you please elaborate on the O2 and vaseline????? It's certainly not anything to do with aspirating is it!!! Thanks Janie
    I have always been told that it is because primarily vaseline-based products are potentially flammable. If I am wrong someone please correct me. I don't want to be giving out incorrect info.
    Angie
  7. by   aimeee
    I've heard that too, and I have had stories related to me, but I have never seen anything in print.

Must Read Topics


close