Course Title: Provide or assist with oral hygiene

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2016

Course Code: DENT5846C

Course Title: Provide or assist with oral hygiene

School: 155T Vocational Health and Sciences

Campus: City Campus

Program: C3393 - Certificate III in Dental Assisting

Course Contact: Ms. Suzanne Dellas Fatone

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9341 1406

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff


Mr Nicholas Greer
Program Manager

Telephone: +61 3 9341 1420

Nominal Hours: 50

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

There are no pre-requisites for this unit.

Course Description

This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to provide or assist a patient with their oral hygiene where the patient is unable to perform all or part of these tasks by themselves. The oral hygiene tasks for the patient are carried out within the framework of an individualised care support plan and within the workers designated role and responsibilities.

This unit applies to workers who provide direct patient care in a range of health and community services environments.

The skills in this unit must be applied in accordance with Commonwealth and State/Territory legislation, Australian/New Zealand standards for maintaining infection control and industry codes of practice.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

HLTOHC004 Provide or assist with oral hygiene


1. Identify patient's oral hygiene requirements to ensure good oral health

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Liaise with supervisor to confirm individualised care plan supports requirements to address patient’s oral hygiene needs using a person-centred approach

1.2 Work effectively with patients from a diverse range of backgrounds to meet individual preferences in relation to provision of support or assistance with oral hygiene

1.3 Discuss and confirm the patient’s level of participation in meeting their own oral hygiene preferences and provide information to the patient and/or carer as required

1.4 Confirm oral hygiene requirements are within scope of own knowledge, skills and work role and seek appropriate assistance where patient requirements are outside scope

1.5 Take into account and address impacts that provision of oral hygiene may have on the patient and address any situations of risk associated with the provision of support and confirm actions with supervisor

1.6 Update knowledge to identify appropriate oral hygiene products, processes and aids for providing assistance and promoting independence in line with the patient’s individualised care support plan


2. Assist and support patients in an appropriate manner

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Provide oral hygiene support or assistance in an appropriate environment

2.2 Use effective communication, appropriate body language and a caring attitude to facilitate patient understanding of, and comfort with, oral hygiene processes taking place

2.3 Clarify and address difficulties in providing support, including patient behavioural responses with patient and supervisor within organisation protocols

2.4 Adapt techniques or arrangements in case of patient refusal or inability to comply as recommended in the individualised care support plan

2.5 Recognise signs that indicate an oral health problem, including distress or behaviours of concern, especially in patients unable to articulate their symptoms or concerns

2.6 Develop trust, rapport and respect with the patient and work in an appropriate environment to maintain dignity at an optimal time.

2.7 Ensure patient is in a position which provides visual access to the mouth seeking their assistance to open their own mouth to minimise contact with the mouth and use appropriate infection control procedures

2.8 Provide support for patient’s head or chin to enhance visual access without creating discomfort for the patient


3. Assist and support patients in their identified oral hygiene needs

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Prepare oral hygiene products and aids for use with teeth and soft tissue or dentures in an appropriate, safe and patient preferred manner

3.2 Inform patient and/or carer of oral hygiene processes to take place and incorporate toothbrush care

3.3 Provide and record individualised care support or assistance with oral hygiene tasks with consideration of identified patient preferences or risks

3.4 Where appropriate encourage patient to wear, insert and remove own dentures in line with care plan and support and assist patients with care of dentures

3.5 Update knowledge of techniques to improve oral hygiene practices and modified oral hygiene methods and aids


4. Recognise and report changes in patient oral hygiene requirements

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Regularly review and document oral hygiene techniques being used to ensure oral health is maintained according to the oral health care plan

4.2 Identify variations in oral hygiene support requirements and report to supervisor any concerns to arise during patient contact

4.3 Consult with patient and supervisor to identify required changes to procedures and oral health products and aids

4.4 Maintain and file documentation using relevant technology

Learning Outcomes

Refer to elements. 

Details of Learning Activities

A combination of learning activities will support student’s learning in this unit, such as

  • Facilitator led classroom based lecture and or workshop using PowerPoint Presentations
  • Demonstration and classroom discussion
  • Facilitator led practical clinical demonstration
  • Group discussions
  • Participation in group activities based on simulated workplace exercises
  • Online learning resources accessed via myRMIT Studies (BlackBoard)
  • including online tests or quizzes
  • Practical clinical practice, peer evaluation/feedback session
  • Written classroom tasks

Teaching Schedule

This unit is scheduled for delivery for both Trainee Groups and Non Trainee Groups and the teaching schedule is per the timetable issued on Phase 1 Day1 and is also available on BlackBoard.  

Please note that timetable is subject to change at the discretion of RMIT; In this event notification will be provided to your student email.

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Bird. D. & Robinson D (2014) Torres & Ehrlich Modern Dental Assisting, 11th Ed. W.B.



Other Resources

Students will be able to access course information and learning materials through myRMIT and may be provided with additional materials in class. Lists of relevant reference books, resources in the library and accessible Internet sites will be provided where possible. During the course, you will be directed to websites to enhance your knowledge and understanding of difficult concepts.


Overview of Assessment

The candidate must show evidence of the ability to complete tasks outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit, manage tasks and manage contingencies in the context of the job role. There must be evidence that the candidate has:

  • performed effective oral hygiene practices on 3 different patients in the workplace
  • used processes, aids and equipment appropriately in provision of oral hygiene, including performing the following tasks at least 1 time:
  • tooth brushing
  • soft tissue cleaning
  • use of mouthwash
  • care of dentures
  • care of crown or bridge or implant or braces


Assessment Tasks

Assessment 1: 

Video Assessment (three patients)

Assessment 2:

Assignment (Oral Hygiene)


Elements/Performance Criteria Covered


Ass 1


Ass 2


















































To be deemed competent you must demonstrate an understanding of all aspects required of the competency. Assessment methods have been designed to measure your achievement of each competency in a flexible manner over multiple tasks.


Assessment Tasks




Task 1-3

Video assessment including Report 1-3


Task 4

Written assessment


Assessment Matrix

Other Information

Credit Transfer and/or Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL):

You may be eligible for credit towards courses in your program if you have already met the learning/competency outcomes through previous learning and/or industry experience. To be eligible for credit towards a course, you must demonstrate that you have already completed learning and/or gained industry experience that is:
• Relevant
• Current
• Satisfies the learning/competency outcomes of the course

Please refer to  to find more information about credit transfer and RPL.

Study and Learning Support:
Study and Learning Centre (SLC) provides free learning and academic development advice to you. Services offered by SLC to support your numeracy and literacy skills are:
• Assignment writing, thesis writing and study skills advice
• Maths and science developmental support and advice
• English language development

Please refer to  to find more information about Study and Learning Support.

Disability Liaison Unit:
If you are suffering from long-term medical condition or disability, you should contact Disability Liaison Unit to seek advice and support to complete your studies.
Please refer to  to find more information about services offered by Disability Liaison Unit.

Late Submission:
If you require an Extension of Submittable Work (assignments, reports or project work etc.) for seven calendar days or less (from the original due date) and have valid reasons, you must complete an Application for Extension of Submittable Work (7 Calendar Days or less) form and lodge it with the Senior Educator/ Program Manager.
The application must be lodged no later than one working day before the official due date. You will be notified within no more than two working days of the date of lodgement as to whether the extension has been granted.

If you seek an Extension of Submittable Work for more than seven calendar days (from the original due date), you must lodge an Application for Special Consideration form under the provisions of the Special Consideration Policy, preferably prior to, but no later than two working days after the official due date.

Submittable Work (assignments, reports or project work etc.) submitted late without approval of an extension will not be accepted or marked.

Special Consideration:
Please refer to  to find more information about special consideration.

Plagiarism is a form of cheating and it is very serious academic offence that may lead to expulsion from the university.
Please refer to  to find more information about plagiarism.

Email Communication:
All email communications will be sent to your RMIT email address and you must regularly check your RMIT emails.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview