The nurse is caring for a dehydrated client with impaired oral mucous membranes related to lack of oral intake and vomiting. What nursing interventions should be included in the care plan to relieve symptoms?

Apply lip moisturizer or petroleum jelly.
Monitor mucous membranes for integrity every shift.
Offer frequent salt water rinses (1/2 tsp salt in 8 oz of warm water).
Provide oral care with a soft pediatric toothbrush every 2 to 4 hours.

Explanation

• The oral cavity should be monitored for discoloration, lesions, edema, bleeding, exudate, or dryness.

• Salt water rinses promote the cleansing effect of saliva.

• Apply lip moisturizer or petroleum jelly to prevent lips from cracking or becoming parched.

• Provide oral care using a soft pediatric toothbrush every 2 to 4 hours to improve the condition of the mucous membranes.

• Lemon glycerin sticks have been shown to further dry out the oral mucosa and erode the tooth enamel and should be avoided.

• Avoid mouthwashes with an alcohol base, which can dry the mucous membranes.

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