5.20 Skills Checklist: Oral Care

  1. Gather Supplies: Gloves, toothbrush, toothpaste, emesis/oral basin, cup of water, clothing protector (towel), barrier (paper towel), and linen bag or hamper
  2. Routine Pre-Procedure Steps:
    • Knock on the resident’s door.
    • Perform hand hygiene.
    • Maintain respectful, courteous, and professional communication at all times.
    • Introduce yourself and identify the resident.
    • Provide for privacy.
    • Explain the procedure to the resident.
  3. Procedure Steps:
    • Place all supplies on a barrier.
    • Put on gloves.
    • If the resident is in bed, elevate the head of the bed if it is permissible per the care plan.
    • Cover the resident’s chest with a towel to keep their clothing or gown clean.
    • Wet the toothbrush in the sink or in a cup of water.
    • Apply a small amount of toothpaste to the toothbrush.
    • Brush the resident’s teeth, including the inner, outer, and chewing surfaces of all upper and lower teeth.
    • After each quadrant of the mouth (i.e., lower right, lower left, upper right, or upper left), allow the resident to rinse with water and spit into an emesis basin if needed.
    • Clean the resident’s tongue being careful not to cause the resident to gag.
    • Assist the resident in rinsing their mouth.
    • Wipe the resident’s mouth with the towel on their chest.
    • Remove the towel and place it in a linen bag.
    • Empty the emesis basin.
    • Rinse the emesis basin.
    • Dry the emesis basin.
    • Rinse the toothbrush.
    • Return the equipment to storage.
    • Remove the gloves, turning them inside out.
    • Dispose of the gloves in an appropriate container.
  4. Post-Procedure Steps:
    • Perform hand hygiene.
    • Check for resident comfort and ask if anything else is needed.
    • Ensure the bed is low and locked. Check the brakes.
    • Place the call light or signaling device within reach of the resident.
    • Open the door and privacy curtain.
    • Perform hand hygiene.
    • Document and report any oral issues or changes noted with the resident.

View a YouTube video[1] of an instructor demonstrating oral care:


  1. Chippewa Valley Technical College. (2022, December 3). Oral Care. [Video]. YouTube. Video licensed under CC BY 4.0https://youtu.be/SQEjgHODEz0


Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Nursing Assistant Copyright © by Chippewa Valley Technical College is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Share This Book