MOTIVATE – Maine’s Oral Team-Based Initiative: Vital Access to Education
Oral Health Leads to Total Health
We are pleased to announce our new oral health education program titled MOTIVATE: Maine’s Oral Team-Based Initiative: Vital Access to Education.
MOTIVATE is an innovative, evidence-based, and Maine-tailored program being developed by Lunder-Dineen and a team of Maine-based experts in response to national calls-to-action from the U.S. Surgeon General, American Dental Association, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and others to raise awareness about the connection between good oral health and good systemic health. The program will improve, promote, and protect the oral health and overall health of Maine’s long-term care residents by advancing the skills, expertise, interprofessional education, and practice of health care professionals.
According to Portland-based older adult health expert and MOTIVATE team member Leonard Brennan, DMD, the rate of dental disease in residents living in long-term care settings often progresses rapidly. The result is tooth decay, swollen and sore gums, difficulty eating, pain, and distress. “In many cases, long-term care residents may live with oral health problems because they think it is just part of aging,” Brennan says. “Attending to the oral health needs of long-term care residents will improve their overall health by reducing infections and the difficult problems they cause.”
A team of statewide experts convened by Lunder-Dineen – including Dr. Brennan, University of Maine, University of New England, Maine Dental Association, and Maine Veterans Homes – will develop and implement this innovative, interprofessional, evidence-based, and sustainable educational model to serve as an example that can be utilized to improve oral health across health care settings. The model will include a “blended learning” program of online learning modules combined with an in-person workshop.
Lunder-Dineen has a vision for this initiative to support overall health through innovative oral health education. Long-term care settings present a unique opportunity to work with an interprofessional team on developing and piloting evidence-based practices that improve quality of life and overall health through the use of practical, valuable, effective, cost-saving measures in oral health care.
Learn more about MOTIVATE at www.lunderdineen.org/oral-health.