Durham College students brush up on best practices

Students from Durham College’s (DC) Dental Hygiene and Personal Support Worker (PSW) programs had the opportunity to broaden their area of knowledge and expertise through an experiential learning session facilitated by their professors.

The 90-minute session is in its third year, with the purpose of promoting collaboration and dialogue between the dental hygiene and PSW students. This allows students to share best practices surrounding senior care in the areas of mobility and the importance of oral maintenance.

At the beginning of the session students are divided into pairs, with a representative from each program. During the first 45 minutes the PSW students facilitate discussions surrounding mobility. The focus of this component is to educate dental hygiene students about the numerous mobility limitations a client may experience. PSW students then demonstrate and guide dental hygiene students through best practices for transferring clients from wheelchair to dental chair.

During the second half of the session, the dental hygiene students took the lead with a presentation relating to oral care, diseases and prevention methods. Following the presentation, they discussed and demonstrated effective strategies for clients who are resistant to oral care.

To help facilitators continue to improve this learning opportunity, participants were asked to complete a short, reflective survey on the experience.

This experiential learning session will be showcased at the upcoming Canadian Dental Hygienists Association conference in Victoria, B.C. this October.