No more fighting and biting during mouth care: applying the theoretical constructs of threat perception to clinical practice.

Academic Article


  • The purpose of this article is to describe how the neurobiological principles of threat perception and fear response can support clinical approaches to prevent and reduce care-resistant behaviors during mouth care. Nursing home residents who exhibit care-resistant behavior are at risk for poor oral health because daily oral hygiene may not be consistently provided. Poor oral health predisposes these older people to systemic problems such as pneumonia, cerebral vascular accidents, and hyperglycemia. Care-resistant behavior is a fear-evoked response to nurses' unintentionally threatening behavior during mouth care. Nurses can safely and effectively provide mouth care to persons with dementia who resist care by using personalized combinations of 15 threat reduction strategies.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Jablonski RA; Therrien B; Kolanowski A
  • Start Page

  • 163
  • End Page

  • 175
  • Volume

  • 25
  • Issue

  • 3