"Maintenance of Dental Implants" is a wonderful example of a paper on dental health. Research problem: What is the level of awareness of GDP/hygienists regarding the day-to-day ad long-term maintenance of dental implants? Background and aims of the study The rising population of seniors in American society means that nearly 40 million adults will require partial or complete dentures over the next decade. Implants represent a significant improvement over conventional dentures with respect to the two most significant effects of tooth loss on adults; poor self-image and self-esteem, and efficiency in chewing. Combined, these effects can increase the rate of depression and malnutrition among the elderly, both of which are already significant problems for this population, and which put them at risk for other significant causes of death such as cancer, heart disease and high blood pressure. As a result, the role of maintaining ace and hygiene of dental implants will become increasingly important in the years to come. Principally, bacterial plaques must be controlled to prevent bone loss. Dental hygienists and GDP’ s are any practices first line of defence with regard to plaques and resulting effects; they are charged with patient education and assessment. Ideal clients for implants will be capable of a detailed home care regime, will be free of other systemic illness that would make surgery ill-advised, and will have sufficient bone for implantation. After making an assessment GDP/hygienist will further design a home care routine which consists of post-surgical wound care, daily cleaning and observation of “ warning signs. ” If the original tooth loss was due to poor self-care, this educative function is particularly important as is correct adherence to and observation during follow-up appointments. Aims: This study aims to address whether GDP/Hygienists are Aware of post-operative care for dental implants Aware of daily maintenance for implants Aware of the criteria for ideal implant candidates Able to assess bacterial plaque and tissue health Aware of the procedures required for in-office maintenance Identify themselves as primary educators of clients Identify themselves as primary screeners of appropriate candidates for implants Objectives This study will recruit and assess 50 GDP/dental hygienists according to the above-listed aims. Hypothesis GDP/hygienists are partially informed regarding maintenance of dental implants and may underestimate their role ad primary educators of clients who receive such implants. Methods Subjects Subjects will be 50 GDP/hygienists with a representative sampling of male and female hygienists. They will have a range of work experience from 1 year to 20 years. They will be currently employed as hygienists, in a practice or work environment which offers implants. Exclusion criteria: Subjects will be excluded if they are unemployed, employed for less than 1 year, or work in a practice which does not offer implants. Design and procedure: Subjects will be recruited through professional associations and recruited using a 30-question, 45-minute assessment tool of the original design, which will address the above-listed aims. Subjects will be accessed via telephone either at their workplace or at home, depending on their preference. Their preference will be recorded, along with responses ad key demographic ad professional information. Analyses: Results will be formally, statistically analysed and discussed in the form of a written paper and oral presentation. Milestones: The processes will be evaluated ad assessed at four critical junctures: 1) recruitment and consent, 2) half-way through completion of interviews, 3) upon full completion of interviews 4) following data entry and statistical analysis 4) upon completion of the full meta-analysis. Resources required: Access to a relevant professional organization Assessment Tools Minimal office space with telephone and internet connection Statistical expertise and assistance
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Boerrigter EM, Stegenga B, Raghoebar GM, Boering G: Patient satisfaction and chewing ability with implant retained mandibular overdentures: A comparison with new complete dentures with or without preprosthetic surgery. Journal of Oral Rehabilitation 1999;26(1):7-13.
Chitwood W: Implant candidates:Who qualifies? Journal of Oral Implantology1996; 22(1):56-58.
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Silverstein L, Garg A, Callan D, Shatz P:The key to success: Maintaining thelong-term health of implants. Dentistry Today 1998;17(2):104-111.
Terracciano-Mortilla L: Hygiene and soft tissue management:The hygienist’s perspective. In: Babbush CA (ed.): Dental Implants:The Art and Science. Philadelphia,W.B. Saunders, 2001, pp. 423-443.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Oral Health: A Report of the Surgeon General. Rockville,MD, USDHHS National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Institute of Health, 2000.