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1.  Risk indicators for severe impaired oral health among indigenous Australian young adults 
BMC Oral Health  2010;10:1.
Background
Oral health impairment comprises three conceptual domains; pain, appearance and function. This study sought to: (1) estimate the prevalence of severe oral health impairment as assessed by a summary oral health impairment measure, including aspects of dental pain, dissatisfaction with dental appearance and difficulty eating, among a birth cohort of Indigenous Australian young adults (n = 442, age range 16-20 years); (2) compare prevalence according to demographic, socio-economic, behavioural, dental service utilisation and oral health outcome risk indicators; and (3) ascertain the independent contribution of those risk indicators to severe oral health impairment in this population.
Methods
Data were from the Aboriginal Birth Cohort (ABC) study, a prospective longitudinal investigation of Aboriginal individuals born 1987-1990 at an Australian regional hospital. Data for this analysis pertained to Wave-3 of the study only. Severe oral health impairment was defined as reported experience of toothache, poor dental appearance and food avoidance in the last 12 months. Logistic regression models were used to evaluate effects of demographic, socio-economic, behavioural, dental service utilisation and clinical oral disease indicators on severe oral health impairment. Effects were quantified as odds ratios (OR).
Results
The percent of participants with severe oral health impairment was 16.3 (95% CI 12.9-19.7). In the multivariate model, severe oral health impairment was associated with untreated dental decay (OR 4.0, 95% CI 1.6-9.6). In addition to that clinical indicator, greater odds of severe oral health impairment were associated with being female (OR 2.0, 95% CI 1.2-3.6), being aged 19-20 years (OR 2.1, 95% CI 1.2-3.6), soft drink consumption every day or a few days a week (OR 2.6, 95% 1.2-5.6) and non-ownership of a toothbrush (OR 1.9, 95% CI 1.1-3.4).
Conclusions
Severe oral health impairment was prevalent among this population. The findings suggest that public health strategies that address prevention and treatment of dental disease, self-regulation of soft drink consumption and ownership of oral self-care devices are needed if severe oral health impairment among Indigenous Australian young adults is to be reduced.
doi:10.1186/1472-6831-10-1
PMCID: PMC2827466  PMID: 20102640
2.  A phase II clinical trial of a dental health education program delivered by aboriginal health workers to prevent early childhood caries 
BMC Public Health  2012;12:681.
Background
Early Childhood Caries (ECC) is a widespread problem in Australian Aboriginal communities causing severe pain and sepsis. In addition dental services are difficult to access for many Aboriginal children and trying to obtain care can be stressful for the parents. The control of dental caries has been identified as a key indictor in the reduction of Indigenous disadvantage. Thus, there is a need for new approaches to prevent ECC, which reflect the cultural norms of Aboriginal communities.
Methods/Design
This is a Phase II single arm trial designed to gather information on the effectiveness of a dental health education program for Aboriginal children aged 6 months, followed over 2 years. The program will deliver advice from Aboriginal Health Workers on tooth brushing, diet and the use of fluoride toothpaste to Aboriginal families. Six waves of data collection will be conducted to enable estimates of change in parental knowledge and their views on the acceptability of the program. The Aboriginal Health Workers will also be interviewed to record their views on the acceptability and program feasibility. Clinical data on the child participants will be recorded when they are 30 months old and compared with a reference population of similar children when the study began. Latent variable modeling will be used to interpret the intervention effects on disease outcome.
Discussion
The research project will identify barriers to the implementation of a family centered Aboriginal oral health strategy, as well as the development of evidence to assist in the planning of a Phase III cluster randomized study.
Trial registration
ACTRN12612000712808
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-12-681
PMCID: PMC3520707  PMID: 22909327
Oral health; Aboriginal families; Health promotion
3.  Oral health and social and emotional well-being in a birth cohort of Aboriginal Australian young adults 
BMC Public Health  2011;11:656.
Background
Social and emotional well-being is an important component of overall health. In the Indigenous Australian context, risk indicators of poor social and emotional well-being include social determinants such as poor education, employment, income and housing as well as substance use, racial discrimination and cultural knowledge. This study sought to investigate associations between oral health-related factors and social and emotional well-being in a birth cohort of young Aboriginal adults residing in the northern region of Australia's Northern Territory.
Methods
Data were collected on five validated domains of social and emotional well-being: anxiety, resilience, depression, suicide and overall mental health. Independent variables included socio-demographics, dental health behaviour, dental disease experience, oral health-related quality of life, substance use, racial discrimination and cultural knowledge.
Results
After adjusting for other covariates, poor oral health-related items were associated with each of the social and emotional well-being domains. Specifically, anxiety was associated with being female, having one or more decayed teeth and racial discrimination. Resilience was associated with being male, having a job, owning a toothbrush, having one or more filled teeth and knowing a lot about Indigenous culture; while being female, having experienced dental pain in the past year, use of alcohol, use of marijuana and racial discrimination were associated with depression. Suicide was associated with being female, having experience of untreated dental decay and racial discrimination; while being female, having experience of dental disease in one or more teeth, being dissatisfied about dental appearance and racial discrimination were associated with poor mental health.
Conclusion
The results suggest there may be value in including oral health-related initiatives when exploring the role of physical conditions on Indigenous social and emotional well-being.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-11-656
PMCID: PMC3176220  PMID: 21851641
4.  Dental caries in 14- and 15-year-olds in New South Wales, Australia 
BMC Public Health  2013;13:1060.
Background
Dental caries remains one of the most common chronic diseases of adolescents. In Australia there have been few epidemiological studies of the caries experience of adolescents with most surveys focusing on children. The New South Wales (NSW) Teen Dental Survey 2010 is the second major survey undertaken by the Centre for Oral Health Strategy. The survey is part of a more systematic and efficient approach to support State and Local Health District dental service planning and will also be used for National reporting purposes.
Methods
Data for the NSW Teen Dental Survey were collected in 2010 from a random sample of Year 9 secondary school students aged 14 to 15 years from metropolitan and non-metropolitan schools under the jurisdiction of the NSW Department of Education and Training, the Catholic Education Commission and Independent Schools in New South Wales. Nineteen calibrated examiners performed 1269 clinical examinations at a total of 84 secondary schools across NSW. The survey was accompanied by a questionnaire looking at oral health related behaviours, risk factors and the usage of the Medicare Teen Dental Plan.
Results
175 schools were contacted, with 84 (48%) accepting the invitation to participate in the study. A total of 5,357 student consent forms and parent information packages were sent out and 1,256 students were examined; leading to a student participation rate of 23%. The survey reported a mean DMFT for 14 and 15 year olds of 1.2 and it was identified that 45.4% of students had an experience of dental caries. Major variations in caries experience reported occurred by remoteness, water fluoridation status, socio-economic status and household income levels.
Conclusions
The NSW Teen Dental Survey provided state-wide data that will contribute to the national picture on adolescent oral health. The mean DMFT score of 1.2 is similar to the national caries experience data for this age group from the Australian Child Dental Health Survey in 2009.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-13-1060
PMCID: PMC3840655  PMID: 24209635
Teen dental survey; School children; Adolescents; Caries experience
5.  Dental Anxiety and the Use of Oral Health Services Among People Attending Two HIV Primary Care Clinics in Miami 
Public Health Reports  2012;127(Suppl 2):36-44.
Objectives
We examined factors associated with dental anxiety among a sample of HIV primary care patients and investigated the independent association of dental anxiety with oral health care.
Methods
Cross-sectional data were collected in 2010 from 444 patients attending two HIV primary care clinics in Miami-Dade County, Florida. Corah Dental Anxiety Scores and use of oral health-care services were obtained from all HIV-positive patients in the survey.
Results
The prevalence of moderate to severe dental anxiety in this sample was 37.8%, while 7.9% of the sample was characterized with severe dental anxiety. The adjusted odds of having severe dental anxiety were 3.962 times greater for females than for males (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.688, 9.130). After controlling for age, ethnicity, gender, education, access to dental care, and HIV primary clinic experience, participants with severe dental anxiety had 69.3% lower adjusted odds of using oral health-care services within the past 12 months (vs. longer than 12 months ago) compared with participants with less-than-severe dental anxiety (adjusted odds ratio = 0.307, 95% CI 0.127, 0.742).
Conclusion
A sizable number of patients living with HIV have anxiety associated with obtaining needed dental care. Routine screening for dental anxiety and counseling to reduce dental anxiety are supported by this study as a means of addressing the impact of dental anxiety on the use of oral health services among HIV-positive individuals.
PMCID: PMC3314391  PMID: 22547875
6.  Dental utilization by children in Hispanic agricultural worker families in California 
Background
Agricultural worker families encounter multiple barriers to accessing all needed dental care. This study investigated predisposing, enabling, and need factors associated with children's past year dental utilization among Hispanic agricultural worker families in central California.
Methods
Oral health survey and clinical data were collected from families participating in a larger, population-based study in 2006-7. Generalized estimating equation logit regression assessed effects on a dental visit among children aged 0-17 (n=405). Analyses adjusted for clustering of children in the same household. Predisposing (sociodemographics), enabling (child's dental insurance, usual source of dental care, caregiver past year dental visit, acculturation level, income and education), and need (caregiver's oral health rating, perception of cavities, and clinically-determined treatment urgency) factors were examined.
Results
Half (51%) the children had a past year dental visit, while 23% had never been to a dentist. In the final model, children were less likely to have a past year dental visit if they were foreign-born, male, had caregivers that thought they had cavities or were unsure, and if the dentist recommended treatment ‘at earliest convenience’. Children aged 6-12, with a regular dental care source, and whose caregivers had a recent dentist visit were more likely to have a past year dental visit.
Conclusions
Children were more likely to have a past year dental visit if they had a usual source of dental care (OR =4.78, CI=2.51-9.08), and if the caregiver had a past year dental visit (OR=1.88, CI=1.04-3.38). Emphasis should be placed on these two modifiable factors to increase children's dental utilization.
PMCID: PMC4301614  PMID: 25621285
Cross-Sectional Studies/utilization; Dental Health Surveys/utilization; Hispanic Americans
7.  Minimising barriers to dental care in older people 
BMC Oral Health  2008;8:7.
Background
Older people are increasingly retaining their natural teeth but at higher risk of oral disease with resultant impact on their quality of life. Socially deprived people are more at risk of oral disease and yet less likely to take up care. Health organisations in England and Wales are exploring new ways to commission and provide dental care services in general and for vulnerable groups in particular. This study was undertaken to investigate barriers to dental care perceived by older people in socially deprived inner city area where uptake of care was low and identify methods for minimising barriers in older people in support of oral health.
Methods
A qualitative dual-methodological approach, utilising both focus groups and individual interviews, was used in this research. Participants, older people and carers of older people, were recruited using purposive sampling through day centres and community groups in the inner city boroughs of Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham in South London. A topic guide was utilised to guide qualitative data collection. Informants' views were recorded on tape and in field notes. The data were transcribed and analysed using Framework Methodology.
Results
Thirty-nine older people and/or their carers participated in focus groups. Active barriers to dental care in older people fell into five main categories: cost, fear, availability, accessibility and characteristics of the dentist. Lack of perception of a need for dental care was a common 'passive barrier' amongst denture wearers in particular. The cost of dental treatment, fear of care and perceived availability of dental services emerged to influence significantly dental attendance. Minimising barriers involves three levels of action to be taken: individual actions (such as persistence in finding available care following identification of need), system changes (including reducing costs, improving information, ensuring appropriate timing and location of care, and good patient management) and societal issues (such as reducing isolation and loneliness). Older people appeared to place greater significance on system and societal change than personal action.
Conclusion
Older people living within the community in an inner city area where NHS dental care is available face barriers to dental care. Improving access to care involves actions at individual, societal and system level. The latter includes appropriate management of older people by clinicians, policy change to address NHS charges; consideration of when, where and how dental care is provided; and clear information for older people and their carers on available local dental services, dental charges and care pathways.
doi:10.1186/1472-6831-8-7
PMCID: PMC2335092  PMID: 18366785
8.  Influence of cigarette smoking on the overall perception of dental health among adults aged 20-79 years, United States, 1988-1994. 
Public Health Reports  2005;120(2):124-132.
OBJECTIVE: Investigation into the relationship between lifestyle factors (particularly cigarette smoking) and perceived oral health has been limited. Data from the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES II), 1988-1994, were used to explore this relationship in a large sample of U.S. adults. METHODS: This study used data on 13,357 dentate participants in NHANES III aged 20-79 years. In NHANES III, information on perceived dental health, sociodemographic attributes, smoking status, frequency of dental visits, dental insurance, and general health perception were collected during a home interview, and oral health status was assessed at a mobile examination center. RESULTS: Overall, 34.4% of individuals in the study sample reported having an unfavorable perception of their dental health by qualifying it as "fair" or "poor." Furthermore, 46.6% of smokers had an unfavorable dental health perception, compared to 28.3% of non-smokers. An interaction between smoking and race/ethnicity was found in logistic regression modeling. Stratified results show that cigarette smoking was not a significant predictor for an unfavorable dental health perception among individuals who self-identified as Mexican American, but smoking was a significant predictor for an unfavorable dental health perception among those who identified as non-Hispanic black or non-Hispanic white. CONCLUSIONS: This is the first study to describe the effects of smoking on dental health perception while controlling for examined oral health status. Because perceived dental health is a potential indicator for dental care utilization, a better knowledge of the factors that influence dental health perception is not only important for dental services planning, but also for understanding oral health-related quality of life issues. Additionally, given that smoking may negatively affect dental health perception, these findings have potential implications for smoking cessation activities conducted by dental care providers.
PMCID: PMC1497695  PMID: 15842113
9.  Dental caries prevalence, oral health knowledge and practice among indigenous Chepang school children of Nepal 
BMC Oral Health  2013;13:20.
Background
Chepang communities are one of the most deprived ethnic communities in Nepal. According to the National Pathfinder Survey, dental caries is a highly prevalent childhood disease in Nepal. There is no data concerning the prevalence of caries along with knowledge, attitude and oral hygiene practices among Chepang schoolchildren. The objectives of this study were to 1) record the prevalence of dental caries 2) report experience of dental pain 3) evaluate knowledge, attitude and preventive practices on oral health of primary Chepang schoolchildren.
Method
A cross sectional epidemiological study was conducted in 5 government Primary schools of remote Chandibhanjyang Village Development Committee (VDC) in Chitwan district. Ethical approval was taken from the Institutional Review Board within the Research Department of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) Tribhuvan University. Consent was obtained from parents for conducting clinical examination and administrating questionnaire. Permission was taken from the school principal in all schools. Data was collected using a pretested questionnaire on 131 schoolchildren aged 8-16-year- olds attending Grade 3–5. Clinical examination was conducted on 361 school children aged 5–16 –year-olds attending grade 1–5. Criteria set by the World Health Organization (1997) was used for caries diagnosis. The questionnaires, originally constructed in English and translated into Nepali were administered to the schoolchildren by the researchers. SPSS 11software was used for data analysis.
Results
Caries prevalence for 5–6 –year-old was above the goals recommended by WHO and Federation of Dentistry international (FDI) of less than 50% caries free children. Caries prevalence in 5-6-year-olds was 52% and 12-13-year-olds was 41%. The mean dmft/DMFT score of 5–6 –year-olds and 12 -13-year -olds was 1.59, 0.31 and 0.52, 0.84 respectively. The DMFT scores increased with age and the d/D component constituted almost the entire dmft/DMFT index. About 31% of 8-16-year-olds school children who participated in the survey reported having suffered from oral pain. Further, the need for treatment of decayed teeth was reported at 100%. About 76% children perceived teeth as an important component of general health and 75% reported it was required to eat. A total 93% children never visited a dentist or a health care service. Out of 56% children reporting cleaning their teeth daily, only 24% reported brushing their teeth twice daily. About 86% of the children reported using toothbrush and toothpaste to clean their teeth. Although 61% children reported to have received oral health education, 82% children did not know about fluoride and its benefit on dental health. About 50% children reported bacteria as the main cause of tooth decay and 23% as not brushing teeth for gingivitis. Frequency of sugar exposure was low; 75% of children reported eating sugar rich food once daily.
Conclusions
Caries prevalence of 5–6 –year- old Chepang school children is above the recommended target set by FDI/WHO. The study reported 31% schoolchildren aged 8-16-year old suffered oral pain and decayed component constituted almost the entire dmft/DMFT index. The brushing habit was reportedly low with only 24% of the children brushing twice daily. A nationwide scientifically proven, cost effective school based interventions is needed for prevention and control of caries in schoolchildren in Nepal.
doi:10.1186/1472-6831-13-20
PMCID: PMC3655880  PMID: 23672487
Dental caries; School children; Oral hygiene
10.  Determining the optimal model for role-substitution in NHS dental services in the United Kingdom 
BMC Oral Health  2013;13:46.
Background
Role-substitution describes a model of dental care where Dental Care Professionals (DCPs) provide some of the clinical activity previously undertaken by General Dental Practitioners. This has the potential to increase technical efficiency, the capacity to care and reduce costs. Technical efficiency is defined as the production of the maximum amount of output from a given amount of input so that the service operates at the production frontier i.e. optimal level of productivity. Academic research into technical efficiency is becoming increasingly utilised in health care, although no studies have investigated the efficiency of NHS dentistry or role-substitution in high-street dental practices. The aim of this study is to examine the barriers and enablers that exist for role-substitution in general dental practices in the NHS and to determine the most technically efficient model for role-substitution.
Methods/design
A screening questionnaire will be sent to DCPs to determine the type and location of role-substitutive models employed in NHS dental practices in the United Kingdom (UK). Semi-structured interviews will then be conducted with practice owners, DCPs and patients at selected sites identified by the questionnaire. Detail will be recorded about the organisational structure of the dental team, the number of NHS hours worked and the clinical activity undertaken. The interviews will continue until saturation and will record the views and attitudes of the members of the dental team. Final numbers of interviews will be determined by saturation.
The second work-stream will examine the technical efficiency of the selected practices using Data Envelopment Analysis and Stochastic Frontier Modeling. The former is a non-parametric technique and is considered to be a highly flexible approach for applied health applications. The latter is parametric and is based on frontier regression models that estimate a conventional cost function.
Discussion
Maximising health for a given level and mix of resources is an ethical imperative for health service planners. This study will determine the technical efficiency of role-substitution and so address one of the key recommendations of the Independent Review of NHS dentistry in England.
doi:10.1186/1472-6831-13-46
PMCID: PMC3849722  PMID: 24063247
11.  Challenges and strategies for cohort retention and data collection in an indigenous population: Australian Aboriginal Birth Cohort 
Background
Longitudinal prospective birth cohort studies are pivotal to identifying fundamental causes and determinants of disease and health over the life course. There is limited information about the challenges, retention, and collection strategies in the study of Indigenous populations. The aim is to describe the follow-up rates of an Australian Aboriginal Birth Cohort study and how they were achieved.
Methods
Participants were 686 babies enrolled between January 1987 and March 1990, born to a mother recorded in the Delivery Suite Register of the Royal Darwin Hospital (RDH) as a self-identified Aboriginal. The majority of the participants (70%) resided in Northern Territory within rural, remote and very remote Aboriginal communities that maintain traditional connections to their land and culture. The Aboriginal communities are within a sparsely populated (0.2 people/ km2) area of approximately 900,000 km2 (347sq miles), with poor communication and transport infrastructures. Follow-ups collecting biomedical and lifestyle data directly from participants in over 40 locations were conducted at 11.4 years (Wave-2) and 18.2 years (Wave-3), with Wave-4 follow-up currently underway.
Results
Follow-ups at 11 and 18 years of age successfully examined 86% and 72% of living participants respectively. Strategies addressing logistic, cultural and ethical challenges are documented.
Conclusions
Satisfactory follow-up rates of a prospective longitudinal Indigenous birth cohort with traditional characteristics are possible while maintaining scientific rigor in a challenging setting. Approaches included flexibility, respect, and transparent communication along with the adoption of culturally sensitive behaviours. This work should inform and assist researchers undertaking or planning similar studies in Indigenous and developing populations.
doi:10.1186/1471-2288-14-31
PMCID: PMC3942517  PMID: 24568142
Epidemiological method; Prospective longitudinal cohort; Ethnic minority; Health determinants; Australian; Aboriginal
12.  Reducing disease burden and health inequalities arising from chronic disease among Indigenous children: an early childhood caries intervention 
BMC Public Health  2012;12:323.
Background
This study seeks to determine if implementing a culturally-appropriate early childhood caries (ECC) intervention reduces dental disease burden and oral health inequalities among Indigenous children living in South Australia, Australia.
Methods/Design
This paper describes the study protocol for a randomised controlled trial conducted among Indigenous children living in South Australia with an anticipated sample of 400. The ECC intervention consists of four components: (1) provision of dental care; (2) fluoride varnish application to the teeth of children; (3) motivational interviewing and (4) anticipatory guidance. Participants are randomly assigned to two intervention groups, immediate (n = 200) or delayed (n = 200). Provision of dental care (1) occurs during pregnancy in the immediate intervention group or when children are 24-months in the delayed intervention group. Interventions (2), (3) and (4) occur when children are 6-, 12- and 18-months in the immediate intervention group or 24-, 30- and 36-months in the delayed intervention group. Hence, all participants receive the ECC intervention, though it is delayed 24 months for participants who are randomised to the control-delayed arm. In both groups, self-reported data will be collected at baseline (pregnancy) and when children are 24- and 36-months; and child clinical oral health status will be determined during standardised examinations conducted at 24- and 36-months by two calibrated dental professionals.
Discussion
Expected outcomes will address whether exposure to a culturally-appropriate ECC intervention is effective in reducing dental disease burden and oral health inequalities among Indigenous children living in South Australia.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-12-323
PMCID: PMC3413605  PMID: 22551058
13.  An oral health literacy intervention for Indigenous adults in a rural setting in Australia 
BMC Public Health  2012;12:461.
Background
Indigenous Australians suffer substantially poorer oral health than their non-Indigenous counterparts and new approaches are needed to address these disparities. Previous work in Port Augusta, South Australia, a regional town with a large Indigenous community, revealed associations between low oral health literacy scores and self-reported oral health outcomes. This study aims to determine if implementation of a functional, context-specific oral health literacy intervention improves oral health literacy-related outcomes measured by use of dental services, and assessment of oral health knowledge, oral health self-care and oral health- related self-efficacy.
Methods/design
This is a randomised controlled trial (RCT) that utilises a delayed intervention design. Participants are Indigenous adults, aged 18 years and older, who plan to reside in Port Augusta or a nearby community for the next two years. The intervention group will receive the intervention from the outset of the study while the control group will be offered the intervention 12 months following their enrolment in the study. The intervention consists of a series of five culturally sensitive, oral health education workshops delivered over a 12 month period by Indigenous project officers. Workshops consist of presentations, hands-on activities, interactive displays, group discussions and role plays. The themes addressed in the workshops are underpinned by oral health literacy concepts, and incorporate oral health-related self-efficacy, oral health-related fatalism, oral health knowledge, access to dental care and rights and entitlements as a patient. Data will be collected through a self-report questionnaire at baseline, at 12 months and at 24 months. The primary outcome measure is oral health literacy. Secondary outcome measures include oral health knowledge, oral health self-care, use of dental services, oral health-related self-efficacy and oral health-related fatalism.
Discussion
This study uses a functional, context-specific oral health literacy intervention to improve oral health literacy-related outcomes amongst rural-dwelling Indigenous adults. Outcomes of this study will have implications for policy and planning by providing evidence for the effectiveness of such interventions as well as provide a model for working with Indigenous communities.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-12-461
PMCID: PMC3416720  PMID: 22716205
14.  Common risk factor approach to address socioeconomic inequality in the oral health of preschool children – a prospective cohort study 
BMC Public Health  2014;14:429.
Background
Dental caries remains the most prevalent chronic condition in children and a major contributor to poor general health. There is ample evidence of a skewed distribution of oral health, with a small proportion of children in the population bearing the majority of the burden of the disease. This minority group is comprised disproportionately of socioeconomically disadvantaged children. An in-depth longitudinal study is needed to better understand the determinants of child oral health, in order to support effective evidence-based policies and interventions in improving child oral health. The aim of the Study of Mothers’ and Infants’ Life Events Affecting Oral Health (SMILE) project is to identify and evaluate the relative importance and timing of critical factors that shape the oral health of young children and then to seek to evaluate those factors in their inter-relationship with socioeconomic influences.
Methods/Design
This investigation will apply an observational prospective study design to a cohort of socioeconomically-diverse South Australian newborns and their mothers, intensively following these dyads as the children grow to toddler age. Mothers of newborn children will be invited to participate in the study in the early post-partum period. At enrolment, data will be collected on parental socioeconomic status, mothers’ general and dental health conditions, details of the pregnancy, infant feeding practice and parental health behaviours and practices. Data on diet and feeding practices, oral health behaviours and practices, and dental visiting patterns will be collected at 3, 6, 12 and 24 months of age. When children turn 24-30 months, the children and their mothers/primary care givers will be invited to an oral examination to record oral health status. Anthropometric assessment will also be conducted.
Discussion
This prospective cohort study will examine a wide range of determinants influencing child oral health and related general conditions such as overweight. It will lead to the evaluation of the inter-relationship among main influences and their relative effect on child oral health. The study findings will provide high level evidence of pathways through which socio-environmental factors impact child oral health. It will also provide an opportunity to examine the relationship between oral health and childhood overweight.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-14-429
PMCID: PMC4039048  PMID: 24885129
Children; Early childhood caries; Socioeconomic inequality; Prospective cohort study
15.  Social capital and dental pain in Brazilian northeast: a multilevel cross-sectional study 
BMC Oral Health  2013;13:2.
Background
There is limited evidence on possible associations between social determinants and dental pain. This study investigated the relationship of neighborhood and individual social capital with dental pain in adolescents, adults and the elderly.
Methods
A population-based multilevel study was conducted involving 624 subjects from 3 age groups: 15–19, 35–44 and 65–74 years. They were randomly selected from 30 census tracts in three cities in the State of Paraíba, Brazil. A two-stage cluster sampling was used considering census tracts and households as sampling units. The outcome of study was the presence of dental pain in the last 6 months. Information on dental pain, demographic, socio-economic, health-related behaviors, use of dental services, self-perceived oral health and social capital measures was collected through interviews. Participants underwent a clinical examination for assessment of dental caries. Neighborhood social capital was evaluated using aggregated measures of social trust, social control, empowerment, political efficacy and neighborhood safety. Individual social capital assessment included bonding and bridging social capital. Multilevel logistic regression was used to test the relationship of neighborhood and individual social capital with dental pain after sequential adjustment for covariates.
Results
Individuals living in neighborhoods with high social capital were 52% less likely to report dental pain than those living in neighborhoods with low social capital (OR = 0.48, 95% CI = 0.27-0.85). Bonding social capital (positive interaction) was independently associated with dental pain (OR = 0.88, 95% CI = 0.80-0.91). Last dental visit, self-perceived oral health and number of decayed teeth were also significantly associated with dental pain.
Conclusions
Our findings suggest that contextual and individual social capital are independently associated with dental pain.
doi:10.1186/1472-6831-13-2
PMCID: PMC3543847  PMID: 23289932
Dental pain; Epidemiology; Oral health; Social capital; Socioeconomic factors
16.  Dental Caries Experience and Use of Dental Services among Brazilian Prisoners 
This ross-sectional study involving 127 male prisoners evaluates the use of dental services and dental caries among Brazilian inmates. Data were collected by interview and clinical examination. Sociodemographic and sentencing information as well as use of dental services, self-reported dental morbidity, self-perception, and oral health impacts were investigated. The mean DMFT index value was 19.72. Of the components, the decayed component showed the highest mean value (11.06 ± 5.37). Statistically significant association was found between DMFTs with values from 22 to 32 and oral health satisfaction (p = 0.002), difficulty speaking (p = 0.024), shame of talking (p = 0.004) and smiling (p < 0.001). Regarding the use of dental services, 80% had their last dental appointment less than one year ago, with most visits occurring in prison (80%), with restorative treatment (32%), followed by dental pain (26.4%), being the main reasons for such appointments. Most prisoners used dental services provided by the prison. Although restorative treatment has been the main reason for the use of dental services, “decayed” and “missing” components contributed to the high mean DMFT index.
doi:10.3390/ijerph111212118
PMCID: PMC4276604  PMID: 25429680
dental caries; tooth loss; prisons; prisoners
17.  Interventions for tobacco cessation in the dental setting 
Background
Tobacco use has significant adverse effects on oral health. Oral health professionals in the dental office or community setting have a unique opportunity to increase tobacco abstinence rates among tobacco users.
Objectives
This review assesses the effectiveness of interventions for tobacco cessation delivered by oral health professionals and offered to cigarette smokers and smokeless tobacco users in the dental office or community setting.
Search methods
We searched the Cochrane Tobacco Addiction Group Specialized Register (CENTRAL), MEDLINE (1966-November 2011), EMBASE (1988-November 2011), CINAHL (1982-November 2011), Healthstar (1975-November 2011), ERIC (1967-November 2011), PsycINFO (1984-November 2011), National Technical Information Service database (NTIS, 1964-November 2011), Dissertation Abstracts Online (1861-November 2011), Database of Abstract of Reviews of Effectiveness (DARE, 1995-November 2011), and Web of Science (1993-November 2011).
Selection criteria
We included randomized and pseudo-randomized clinical trials assessing tobacco cessation interventions conducted by oral health professionals in the dental office or community setting with at least six months of follow-up.
Data collection and analysis
Two authors independently reviewed abstracts for potential inclusion and abstracted data from included trials. Disagreements were resolved by consensus. The primary outcome was abstinence from smoking or all tobacco use (for users of smokeless tobacco) at the longest follow-up, using the strictest definition of abstinence reported. The effect was summarised as an odds ratio, with correction for clustering where appropriate. Heterogeneity was assessed using the I2 statistic and where appropriate a pooled effect was estimated using an inverse variance fixed-effect model.
Main results
Fourteen clinical trials met the criteria for inclusion in this review. Included studies assessed the efficacy of interventions in the dental office or in a community school or college setting. Six studies evaluated the effectiveness of interventions among smokeless tobacco (ST) users, and eight studies evaluated interventions among cigarette smokers, six of which involved adult smokers in dental practice settings. All studies employed behavioral interventions and only one required pharmacotherapy as an interventional component. All studies included an oral examination component. Pooling all 14 studies suggested that interventions conducted by oral health professionals can increase tobacco abstinence rates (odds ratio [OR] 1.71, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.44 to 2.03) at six months or longer, but there was evidence of heterogeneity (I2 = 61%). Within the subgroup of interventions for smokers, heterogeneity was smaller (I2 = 51%), but was largely attributable to a large study showing no evidence of benefit. Within this subgroup there were five studies which involved adult smokers in dental practice settings. Pooling these showed clear evidence of benefit and minimal heterogeneity (OR 2.38, 95% CI 1.70 to 3.35, 5 studies, I2 = 3%) but this was a posthoc subgroup analysis. Amongst the studies in smokeless tobacco users the heterogeneity was also attributable to a large study showing no sign of benefit, possibly due to intervention spillover to control colleges; the other five studies indicated that interventions for ST users were effective (OR 1.70; 95% CI 1.36 to 2.11).
Authors’ conclusions
Available evidence suggests that behavioral interventions for tobacco cessation conducted by oral health professionals incorporating an oral examination component in the dental office or community setting may increase tobacco abstinence rates among both cigarette smokers and smokeless tobacco users. Differences between the studies limit the ability to make conclusive recommendations regarding the intervention components that should be incorporated into clinical practice, however, behavioral counselling (typically brief) in conjunction with an oral examination was a consistent intervention component that was also provided in some control groups.
doi:10.1002/14651858.CD005084.pub3
PMCID: PMC3916957  PMID: 22696348
18.  Dental pain, oral impacts and perceived need for dental treatment in Tanzanian school students: a cross-sectional study 
Background
Dental caries, dental pain and reported oral problems influence people's oral quality of life and thus their perceived need for dental care. So far there is scant information as to the psychosocial impacts of dental diseases and the perceived treatment need in child populations of sub-Saharan Africa.
Objectives
Focusing on primary school students in Kilwa, Tanzania, a district deprived of dental services and with low fluoride concentration in drinking water, this study aimed to assess the prevalence of dental pain and oral impacts on daily performances (OIDP), and to describe the distribution of OIDP by socio-demographics, dental caries, dental pain and reported oral problems. The relationship of perceived need estimates with OIDP was also investigated.
Methods
A cross-sectional study was conducted in 2008. A total of 1745 students (mean age 13.8 yr, sd = 1.67) completed an extensive personal interview and under-went clinical examination. The impacts on daily performances were assessed using a Kiswahili version of the Child-OIDP instrument and caries experience was recorded using WHO (1997) criteria.
Results
A total of 36.2% (41.3% urban and 31.4% rural, p < 0.001) reported at least one OIDP. The prevalence of dental caries was 17.4%, dental pain 36.4%, oral problems 54.1% and perceived need for dental treatment 46.8% in urban students. Corresponding estimates in rural students were 20.8%, 24.4%, 43.3% and 43.8%. Adjusted OR for reporting oral impacts if having dental pain ranged from 2.5 (95% CI 1.8–3.6) (problem smiling) to 4.7 (95% CI 3.4–6.5) (problem sleeping),- if having oral problems, from 1.9 (95% CI 1.3–2.6) (problem sleeping) to 3.8 (95% CI 2.7–5.2) (problem eating) and if having dental caries from 1.5 (95% CI 1.1–2.0) (problem eating) to 2.2 (95% CI 1.5–2.9) (problem sleeping). Students who perceived need for dental care were less likely to be females (OR = 0.8, 95% CI 0.6–0.9) and more likely to have impacts on eating (OR = 1.9, 95% CI 1.4–2.7) and tooth cleaning (OR = 1.6, 95% CI 1.6–2.5).
Conclusion
Substantial proportions of students suffered from untreated dental caries, oral impacts on daily performances and perceived need for dental care. Dental pain and reported oral problems varied systematically with OIDP across the eight impacts considered. Eating and tooth cleaning problems discriminated between subjects who perceived need for dental treatment and those who did not.
doi:10.1186/1477-7525-7-73
PMCID: PMC2726126  PMID: 19643004
19.  Portable Dental Chairs and Their Role in Assisting the Community Outreach Program- a Qualitative Approach 
Objective: Certain conditions limit the independence of deprived people. However, those conditions do not limit the right of these people to receive dental care. Portable dental units may make it possible for the deprived and elderly to receive the care they deserve in more areas. This study aimed to explore dentists’ perceptions of the use of portable dental units in community outreach programs as a precursor to our quantitative study in the future.
Materials and Methods: Qualitative semi-structured interviews were conducted by one interviewer, seven dentists, two specialists, and 11 final-year dental students who had experience with portable dental units in Isfahan, Iran. The qualitative research method was chosen first due to the rarity of information readily available about the units and second due to their specialist application; with which only certain members of the dental community have experience.
Results: Participants described a range of observations they had made whilst using the portable dental units in different locations. The qualitative data were primarily concerned with the range of ideas the interviewers distinguished as relevant when describing the portable dental units. The predominant view most noted within interviews was that the portable units are very useful for the community outreach programs, with two subcategories of serviceability and access to oral health. Other factors mentioned were the competence of the portable dental unit and the factors affecting each individual patient.
Conclusion: Our findings illustrate a number of features that may enhance the reputation of portable dental units, due to their useful nature.
PMCID: PMC4264095  PMID: 25512750
Mobile Health units; Health Services Accessibility; Oral Helth
20.  Brief oral health promotion intervention among parents of young children to reduce early childhood dental decay 
BMC Public Health  2013;13:245.
Background
Severe untreated dental decay affects a child’s growth, body weight, quality of life as well as cognitive development, and the effects extend beyond the child to the family, the community and the health care system. Early health behavioural factors, including dietary practices and eating patterns, can play a major role in the initiation and development of oral diseases, particularly dental caries. The parent/caregiver, usually the mother, has a critical role in the adoption of protective health care behaviours and parental feeding practices strongly influence children’s eating behaviours. This study will test if an early oral health promotion intervention through the use of brief motivational interviewing (MI) and anticipatory guidance (AG) approaches can reduce the incidence of early childhood dental decay and obesity.
Methods
The study will be a randomised controlled study with parents and their new-born child/ren who are seen at 6–12 weeks of age by a child/community health nurse. Consenting parents will complete a questionnaire on oral health knowledge, behaviours, self-efficacy, oral health fatalism, parenting stress, prenatal and peri-natal health and socio-demographic factors at study commencement and at 12 and 36 months. Each child–parent pair will be allocated to an intervention or a standard care group, using a computer-generated random blocks. The standard group will be managed through the standard early oral health screening program; “lift the lip”. The intervention group will be provided with tailored oral health counselling by oral health consultants trained in MI and AG.
Participating children will be examined at 24, and 36 months for the occurrence of dental decay and have their height and weight recorded. Dietary information obtained from a food frequency chart will be used to determine food and dietary patterns. Data analysis will use intention to treat and per protocol analysis and will use tests of independent proportions and means. Multivariate statistical tests will also be used to take account of socio-economic and demographic factors in addition to parental knowledge, behaviour, self-efficacy, and parent/child stress.
Discussion
The study will test the effects of an oral health promotion intervention to affect oral health and general health and have the potential to demonstrate the “common risk factor” approach to health promotion.
Trial registration
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry: http://ACTRN12611000997954
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-13-245
PMCID: PMC3610190  PMID: 23509932
Motivational interviewing; Anticipatory guidance; Early childhood dental decay; Oral health promotion
21.  Reducing disease burden and health inequalities arising from chronic disease among indigenous children: an early childhood caries intervention in Aotearoa/New Zealand 
BMC Public Health  2013;13:1177.
Background
Maaori are the Indigenous people of New Zealand and do not enjoy the same oral health status as the non-Indigenous majority. To overcome oral health disparities, the life course approach affords a valid foundation on which to develop a process that will contribute to the protection of the oral health of young infants. The key to this process is the support that could be provided to the parents or care givers of Maaori infants during the pregnancy of the mother and the early years of the child. This study seeks to determine whether implementing a kaupapa Maaori (Maaori philosophical viewpoint) in an early childhood caries (ECC) intervention reduces dental disease burden among Maaori children. The intervention consists of four approaches to prevent early childhood caries: dental care provided during pregnancy, fluoride varnish application to the teeth of children, motivational interviewing, and anticipatory guidance.
Methods/design
The participants are Maaori women who are expecting a child and who reside within the Maaori tribal area of Waikato-Tainui.
This randomised-control trial will be undertaken utilising the principles of kaupapa Maaori research, which encompasses Maaori leadership, Maaori relationships, Maaori customary practices, etiquette and protocol. Participants will be monitored through clinical and self-reported information collected throughout the ECC intervention. Self-report information will be collected in a baseline questionnaire during pregnancy and when children are aged 24 and 36 months. Clinical oral health data will be collected during standardised examinations at ages 24 and 36 months by calibrated dental professionals. All participants receive the ECC intervention benefits, with the intervention delayed by 24 months for participants who are randomised to the control-delayed arm.
Discussion
The development and evaluation of oral health interventions may produce evidence that supports the application of the principles of kaupapa Maaori research in the research processes. This study will assess an ECC intervention which could provide a meaningful approach for Maaori for the protection and maintenance of oral health for Maaori children and their family, thus reducing oral health disparities.
Trial registration
Australia and New Zealand Clinical Trials Register (ANZCTR): ACTRN12611000111976.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-13-1177
PMCID: PMC4029447  PMID: 24330669
Indigenous; Māori; Child; Mother; Oral health; Early childhood caries
22.  Pilot survey of oral health-related quality of life: a cross-sectional study of adults in Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria 
BMC Oral Health  2005;5:7.
Background
Oral health studies conducted so far in Nigeria have documented prevalence and incidence of dental disease using traditional clinical measures. However none have investigated the use of an oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) instrument to document oral health outcomes. The aims of this study are: to describe how oral health affects and impacts quality of life (QoL) and to explore the association between these affects and the oral health care seeking behavior of adults in Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria.
Methods
A cross-sectional survey recruited 356 adults aged 18–64 years from two large hospital outpatient departments and from members of a university community. Closed-ended oral health questionnaire with "effect and impact" item-questions from OHQoL-UK© instrument was administered by trained interviewers. Collected data included sociodemographic, dental visits, and effects and impact of oral health on QoL. Univariate and bivariable analyses were done and a chi-square test was used to test differences in proportions. Multivariable analyses using ANOVA examined the association between QoL factors and visits to a dentist.
Results
Complete data was available for 83% of the participants. About 62% of participants perceived their oral health as affecting their QoL. Overall, 82%, 63%, and 77% of participants perceived that oral health has an effect on their eating or enjoyment of food, sleep or ability to relax, and smiling or laughing, respectively. Some 46%, 36%, and 25% of participants reported that oral health impact their daily activities, social activities, and talking to people, respectively. Dental visits within the last year was significantly associated with eating, speech, and finance (P < 0.05). The summary score for the oral health effects on QoL ranged from 33 to 80 with a median value of 61 (95% CI: 60, 62) and interquartile range of 52–70. Multivariable modeling suggested a model containing only education (F = 6.5, pr>F = 0.0111). The mean of effects sum score for those with secondary/tertiary education levels (mean = 61.8; 95% CI: 60.6, 62.9) was significantly higher than those with less than secondary level of education (mean = 57.2; 95% CI: 57.2, 60.6).
Conclusion
Most adults in the study reported that oral health affects their life quality, and have little/no impact on their quality of life. Dental visits within the last year were associated with eating, speech, and finance.
doi:10.1186/1472-6831-5-7
PMCID: PMC1190187  PMID: 16042806
23.  The relationship of dental caries and dental fear in Malaysian adolescents: a latent variable approach 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:19.
Background
To investigate the role of geography (place of residence) as a moderator in the relationship between dental caries disease and treatment experience and dental fear in 16-year-olds living in Malaysia.
Methods
A multi-stage-stratified sampling method was employed. Five hundred and three, 16-year-olds from 6 government secondary schools participated in this study. The questionnaire examined participants’ demographic profile and assessed their dental fear using the Dental Fear Survey (DFS). The clinical examination consisted of the DMFT as the outcome measure of dental caries disease and treatment experience by a single examiner (ICC = 0.98). Structural equation modelling inspected the relationship between dental fear and dental caries disease and treatment experience.
Results
The mean DMFT was 2.76 (SD 3.25). The DT, MT and FT components were 0.64 (SD 1.25), 0.14 (SD 0.56) and 1.98 (SD 2.43) respectively. Rural compared with urban adolescents had significantly greater mean numbers of decayed and missing teeth. The mean DFS score was 40.8 (SD 12.4). Rural compared with urban adolescents had significantly higher mean scores for physical symptoms of dental fear. The correlation between dental fear (DFS) and dental caries disease and treatment experience (DMFT) was 0.29, p < 0.0001. The structural equation model fitted the raw data well (χ2 = 9.20, df = 8, p = 0.34). All components of DMFT were closely associated in equal strength to the unidimensional hypothetical latent variable of dental caries disease and treatment experience. The strength of the relationship between dental fear and dental caries disease and treatment experience varied in accordance with place of residence.
Conclusion
In conclusion a relationship between dental fear and dental caries disease and treatment experience was shown to exist in 16-year-old adolescents living in Malaysia. This study showed that the rural–urban dichotomy acted as a moderator upon this relationship.
doi:10.1186/1472-6831-14-19
PMCID: PMC3995666  PMID: 24621226
DMFT; Dental fear; Adolescents
24.  HIV/AIDS-related attitudes and oral impacts on daily performances: a cross-sectional study of Sudanese adult dental patients 
Background
Few studies have investigated the relationships between HIV-related knowledge, fear of contagion in dental environments and Oral Impacts on Daily Performance (OIDP) among dental patients. Our objectives were to investigate the associations between HIV-related knowledge and fear of contagion in dental environments and OIDP among dental patients, and to evaluate whether those associations were modified by the frequency of dental service attendance.
Methods
A total of 1262 patients (mean age 30.7 years, 56.5% females) were recruited from the Khartoum Dental Teaching Hospital and the University of Science and Technology during March–July 2008. The participants underwent a full-mouth oral clinical examination and completed an interview in a face-to-face setting.
Results
Of the study participants, 41.4% had visited a dentist at least twice during the last 2 years, 96.2% had caries experience (DT > 0) and 79.1% reported oral impacts (OIDP > 0). The most frequently reported oral impacts were problems eating, sleeping and cleaning teeth. In total, 26.3% of the participants had HIV transmission knowledge, 75.6% knew people with HIV/AIDS and 58.7% perceived a high risk of cross-infection in dental environments. After adjusting for sociodemographic characteristics, frequency of dental service attendance and caries experience, patients who had high HIV-related information exposure, a positive attitude toward people with HIV/AIDS and a high perceived risk of cross-infection were more likely to report oral impacts, whereas patients who knew people with HIV/AIDS were less likely to report oral impacts. The association between OIDP and HIV transmission knowledge was modified by frequency of dental service attendance.
Conclusions
Dental patients who were informed about HIV and had a high HIV/AIDS risk perception were more likely to report impaired oral health-related quality of life than their less informed counterparts and those who perceived a low risk of contagion. The effect of HIV transmission knowledge on oral impacts was influenced by frequency of dental service attendance.
doi:10.1186/1472-6963-13-335
PMCID: PMC3765642  PMID: 23971974
HIV; AIDS; Attitudes; Oral impacts on daily performance; Dental; Sudan
25.  Social Determinants of Tooth Loss 
Health Services Research  2003;38(6 Pt 2):1843-1862.
Objectives
To quantify racial and socioeconomic status (SES) disparities in oral health, as measured by tooth loss, and to determine the role of dental care use and other factors in explaining disparities.
Data Sources/Study Setting
The Florida Dental Care Study, comprising African Americans (AAs) and non-Hispanic whites 45 years old or older who had at least one tooth.
Study Design
We used a prospective cohort design. Relevant population characteristics were grouped by predisposing, enabling, and need variables. The key outcome was tooth loss, a leading measure of a population's oral health, looked at before and after entering the dental care system. Tooth-specific data were used to increase inferential power by relating the loss of individual teeth to the disease level on those teeth.
Data Collection Methods
In-person interviews and clinical examinations were done at baseline, 24, and 48 months, with telephone interviews every 6 months.
Principal Findings
African Americans and persons of lower SES reported more new dental symptoms, but were less likely to obtain dental care. When they did receive care, they were more likely to experience tooth loss and less likely to report that dentists had discussed alternative treatments with them. At the first stage of analysis, differences in disease severity and new symptoms explained tooth loss disparities. Racial and SES differences in attitudes toward tooth loss and dental care were not contributory. Because almost all tooth loss occurs by means of dental extraction, the total effects of race and SES on tooth loss were artificially minimized unless disparities in dental care use were taken into account.
Conclusions
Race and SES are strong determinants of tooth loss. African Americans and lower SES persons had fewer teeth at baseline and still lost more teeth after baseline. Tooth-specific case-mix adjustment appears, statistically, to explain social disparity variation in tooth loss. However, when social disparities in dental care use are taken into account, social disparities in tooth loss that are not directly due to clinical circumstance become evident. This is because AAs and lower SES persons are more likely to receive a dental extraction once they enter the dental care system, given the same disease extent and severity. This phenomenon underscores the importance of understanding how disparities in health care use, dental insurance coverage, and service receipt contribute to disparities in health. Absent such understanding, the total effects of race and SES on health can be underestimated.
doi:10.1111/j.1475-6773.2003.00205.x
PMCID: PMC1360976  PMID: 14727800
Tooth loss; health disparities; race; socioeconomic status

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