Care sector delegates, particularly care home managers or those involved in staff training are invited to request a place at the launch of this new oral health resource for care homes – and a new qualification for staff.

 Caring for Smiles is Scotland’s national oral health promotion, training and support programme, which aims to improve the oral health of older people, particularly those living in care homes.   

The launch will be a free full-day event on 26 September 2013 at the COSLA Centre, Verity House, 19 Haymarket Yards, Edinburgh, EH12 5BH.   There will be a number of interesting speakers at this event from Alzheimer Scotland Centre for Policy and Practice at University of West of Scotland, the Mental Welfare Commission, the Care Inspectorate, Glasgow Dental School and a care home manager.  

Older people living in care homes are at a significantly higher risk of oral health problems and related conditions than the rest of the population because of high levels of dependency and dementia-related memory issues.  People are increasingly keeping more of their natural teeth and many of those in care homes will rely on staff to maintain their oral health.  Providing good oral care may present challenges both for the resident and staff, as older people may be experiencing varying levels of confusion, memory or communication difficulties and staff often lack the skills and confidence to effectively provide this aspect of personal care.    A clean, healthy mouth is fundamental to everybody’s quality of life.  Oral diseases and conditions are not only painful and distressing, they have an impact on a person’s ability to eat and speak, and are increasingly being linked to a number of serious health problems. 

Developed by the NHS and endorsed by the Care Inspectorate, the new resource, Caring for Smiles – Guide for Care Homes, follows on from the Guide for Trainers, and the Guide for Carers (a small training handout).  The resource will support the training delivered by the NHS teams and also serve as a reference document for oral health information and best practice relevant to older people.  All care homes who sign up for Caring for Smiles training should receive at least one hard copy of this guide.   

The launch of this resource coincides with the development of a new oral health qualification, being developed by NHS Education for Scotland (NES) and to be credit-rated on the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) via the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA).  

To request a place at this event, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..   Please provide your name, job title, care home/organisation, email address (or telephone), and whether private, voluntary or local authority.  

For more general information on the Caring for Smiles programme in your area, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..