- Define mental health and mental illness and distinguish between the two terms
- Recognize signs and symptoms of mental disorders
- Understand the spectrum of mental illnesses
- Discuss recommended treatment and preventative measures for mental conditions discussed in this course
- Illustrate the cyclical relationship between mental and oral health
- List common oral conditions associated with mental illness
- Identify medications commonly prescribed for mental illness that cause oral health complications
The mounting evidence of oral health complications among individuals who suffer from mental illness poses a significant public health problem. In turn poor oral health can exacerbate mental health issues. As the cyclical relationship between mental health and oral health continues to be highlighted within the medical and scientific community, dental hygienists have a responsibility to educate their patients about this connection. This course is designed to provide the dental hygienist with an understanding of mental health and mental illness. It will present the causes, risk factors and symptoms of mental disorders along with diagnostic methods and treatment options. In addition, this course will explore common mental health conditions and new mental health disorders that have developed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants will explore oral health implications of mental illness and the impact of oral health on mental health. Specifically, participants will learn about dental conditions and diseases encountered routinely in dental practices among individuals who suffer from mental illness.