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1.  A pilot study to assess oral health literacy by comparing a word recognition and comprehension tool 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:135.
Oral health literacy is important to oral health outcomes. Very little has been established on comparing word recognition to comprehension in oral health literacy especially in older adults. Our goal was to compare methods to measure oral health literacy in older adults by using the Rapid Estimate of Literacy in Dentistry (REALD-30) tool including word recognition and comprehension and by assessing comprehension of a brochure about dry mouth.
75 males and 75 females were recruited from the University of Connecticut Dental practice. Participants were English speakers and at least 50 years of age. They were asked to read the REALD-30 words out loud (word recognition) and then define them (comprehension). Each correctly-pronounced and defined word was scored 1 for total REALD-30 word recognition and REALD-30 comprehension scores of 0–30. Participants then read the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research brochure “Dry Mouth” and answered three questions defining dry mouth, causes and treatment. Participants also completed a survey on dental behavior.
Participants scored higher on REALD-30 word recognition with a mean of 22.98 (SD = 5.1) compared to REALD-30 comprehension with a mean of 16.1 (SD = 4.3). The mean score on the brochure comprehension was 5.1 of a possible total of 7 (SD = 1.6). Pearson correlations demonstrated significant associations among the three measures. Multivariate regression showed that females and those with higher education had significantly higher scores on REALD-30 word-recognition, and dry mouth brochure questions. Being white was significantly related to higher REALD-30 recognition and comprehension scores but not to the scores on the brochure.
This pilot study demonstrates the feasibility of using the REALD-30 and a brochure to assess literacy in a University setting among older adults. Participants had higher scores on the word recognition than on comprehension agreeing with other studies that recognition does not imply understanding.
PMCID: PMC4242487  PMID: 25406963
Older adults; Oral health; Health literacy; Oral health literacy; Rapid Estimate of Adult Literacy in Dentistry-30; Oral health knowledge; Gender; Oral health status; Comprehension; Word recognition
2.  Measuring oral health literacy: a scoping review of existing tools 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:148.
This article presents findings from a scoping review of tools used to measure oral health literacy. Internationally, interest in oral health literacy is driven by oral health disparities, particularly for disadvantaged groups, with conditions such as dental caries and periodontal disease contributing substantially to the global burden of disease. The increasing focus on measuring oral health literacy aligns with reasons for measuring broader health literacy, that is, by assessing oral health literacy, decisions can be made about instigating interventions at policy and practice level to improve individual and population level oral health. There are numerous tools available that measure oral health literacy using a range of indicators.
A scoping review was designed to map the existing tools designed to measure oral health literacy (OHL). Key search terms were developed and mapped. Selected databases were used that identified 32 relevant studies reporting a range of OHL tools.
We identified 32 articles that reported a range of oral health literacy tools. Many of the studies used the Rapid Estimate of Adult Literacy in Dentistry (REALD) and/or the Test of Functional Health Literacy in Dentistry (ToFHLiD) that were developed from earlier tools designed to measure broader health literacy. These tools have been widely criticised for providing only an approximate measure of OHL based mainly on word recognition. A number of newer tools have included new measures of oral health literacy including numeracy and oral health conceptual knowledge however tools that measure important indicators of oral health literacy such as service navigation are rare.
Findings from this scoping exercise confirm our findings from preliminary scans that the majority of tools are heavily biased towards word recognition, numeracy and reading skills, rather than what this means in terms of health behaviours and service utilisation. More recent developments have attempted to incorporate other aspects considered important, including decision making and service navigation. The incorporation of these aspects into newer tools will provide oral health researchers and policy makers with further evidence of the importance of oral health literacy when designing interventions to improve oral health.
PMCID: PMC4417207  PMID: 25472659
Oral health literacy tools; Oral health; Dental health literacy; Health literacy; Scoping review
3.  Do dentists have better oral health compared to general population: a study on oral health status and oral health behavior in Kathmandu, Nepal 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:23.
Dentists are considered role models by the general population in regards to oral hygiene and oral health behavior. This study aimed to access the oral health status of dentists and laypersons, and compare the dentists’ practice of preventive dentistry and oral self-care behaviors to that of the laypersons.
This cross-sectional study recruited 472 participants (195 dentists and 277 laypersons from the general population). Their oral health/hygiene behavior was assessed using a standardized close-ended multiple choice questionnaire. Oral examination was performed to assess caries using Decayed Missed Filled teeth (DMFT) index and periodontal status using Community Periodontal Index of Treatment Needs (CPITN).
Ninety-six percent of dentists brushed their teeth at least once daily, using fluoridated toothpaste and 80.5% twice daily. Although 94% of laypersons brushed their teeth once daily, they seldom used fluoridated toothpaste. Ten percent of participants in each group were caries free. The mean number of teeth present in the oral cavity (27.4 versus 25.4), mean number of teeth with caries (1.8 versus 3.7) and fillings (2.5 versus 0.4) were significantly different (p < 0.0001) between dentists and laypersons, respectively. Regarding the periodontal status, 82% of dentists had CPITN score of 0 whereas 71% of laypersons had the highest score 3 (p = 0.007), and 81% of the laypersons reported tooth mobility compared to 1% of dentists (p < 0.0001).
The participating dentists had better periodontal status and better self-reported oral health behaviors than the laypersons. Despite similar prevalence of caries in the two groups, the prevalence of decayed and unfilled teeth was lower among the dentists.
PMCID: PMC3994336  PMID: 24655533
Dentist; Oral health behavior; Oral health status; Dental caries; DMFT; Periodontal status; CPITN
4.  Socio-demographic disparity in oral health among the poor: a cross sectional study of early adolescents in Kilwa district, Tanzania 
BMC Oral Health  2010;10:7.
There is a lack of studies considering social disparity in oral health emanating from adolescents in low-income countries. This study aimed to assess socio-demographic disparities in clinical- and self reported oral health status and a number of oral health behaviors. The extent to which oral health related behaviors might account for socio-demographic disparities in oral health status was also examined.
A cross-sectional study was conducted in Kilwa district in 2008. One thousand seven hundred and forty five schoolchildren completed an interview and a full mouth clinical examination. Caries experience was recorded using WHO criteria, whilst type of treatment need was categorized using the ART approach.
The majority of students were caries free (79.8%) and presented with a low need for dental treatment (89.3%). Compared to their counterparts in opposite groups, rural residents and those from less poor households presented more frequently with caries experience (DMT>0), high need for dental treatment and poor oral hygiene behavior, but were less likely to report poor oral health status. Stepwise logistic regressions revealed that social and behavioral variables varied systematically with caries experience, high need for dental treatment and poor self reported oral health. Socio-demographic disparities in oral health outcomes persisted after adjusting for oral health behaviors.
Socio-demographic disparities in oral health outcomes and oral health behaviors do exist. Socio-demographic disparities in oral health outcomes were marginally accounted for by oral health behaviors. Developing policies and programs targeting both social and individual determinants of oral health should be an urgent public health strategy in Tanzania.
PMCID: PMC2868779  PMID: 20406452
5.  A cross sectional study examining social desirability bias in caregiver reporting of children’s oral health behaviors 
BMC Oral Health  2013;13:24.
Our previous research (Pediatrics 2010:126) found a strong association between caregiver oral health literacy (OHL) and children’s oral health status; however, we found a weak association with oral health behaviors (OHBs). We hypothesize that this may be due to social desirability bias (SDB). Our objectives were to compare caregivers’ responses to traditional OHB items and newer SDB-modulating items, and to examine the association of caregiver literacy with OHBs.
We performed a cross-sectional study of 102 caregiver-child dyads, collecting data for OHBs using both traditional and new SDB-modulating items. We measured OHL using REALD-30, a validated word recognition test. We relied upon percent agreement and Cohen’s kappa (k) to quantify the concordance in caregivers’ responses and multivariate log-binomial regression to estimate the impact of OHL on OHBs.
Caregivers’ mean REALD-30 score was 20.7 (SD = 6.0), range 1-30. We found an association between OHL and 4 of 8 OHBs examined. A subset of behavior questions compared traditional versus SDB-modulating items: history of bottle-feeding: agreement = 95%, k = 0.83 (95% CL:0.68,0.99); daily tooth brushing: agreement = 78%, k = 0.25 (95% CL:0.04,0.46); fluoridated toothpaste use: agreement = 88%, k = 0.67 (95% CL:0.49,0.85). After controlling for caregivers’ race, marital status and study site, higher literacy scores remained associated with a decreased prevalence of parental report of “decided not brush the child’s teeth because it would be frustrating”.
Agreement between responses was high for 2 of 3 behavior items. Item 3 (tooth brushing frequency) revealed discordance, likely due to SDB. Use of the SDB-modulating items appears to yield a better estimate of OHB.
PMCID: PMC3680187  PMID: 23725221
Caregivers children; Oral health; Oral hygiene; Health literacy; Oral health literacy; Oral health behaviors; REALD-30; Social desirability bias
6.  Self-rated oral health status, oral health service utilization, and oral hygiene practices among adult Nigerians 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:140.
There is scarce information available on oral health service utilization patterns and common oral hygiene practices among adult Nigerians. We conducted the 2010–2011 national oral health survey before the introduction of the national oral health policy to determine the prevalence of oral health service utilization, patterns of oral hygiene practices, and self reported oral health status, among adults in various social classes, educational strata, ethnic groups and geopolitical zones in Nigeria.
We conducted a cross-sectional survey in North-Central, North-West, South-East, South-South and South-West geopolitical zones of Nigeria. Multi-stage cluster sampling method was used for the sample selection. We administered a structured questionnaire to a total of 7,630 participants. Information on the socio-demographic characteristics, oral hygiene practices and oral health services utilization pattern of participants was obtained.
We interviewed 7, 630 participants (55.6% female). The participants ages ranged between 18 and 81 years, mean age was 37.96 (SD = 13.2). Overall 21.2% of the participants rated their oral health status as very good, 37.1% as good and 27.4% as fair. Only 26.4% reported having visited the dentist at least once prior to the conduct of the survey. More than half of these visits (54.9%) were for treatment purpose. Utilization of oral health services was significantly (p < 0.05) associated with being older, more educated and being engaged in a skilled profession. More educated persons, females and younger persons used toothbrushes for daily tooth cleaning. Age, sex, marital status, level of education and occupation were significantly related to daily frequency of tooth cleaning (p < 0.05).
Our results show that while most Nigerian adults have a positive view of their oral health status, majority reported poor oral health utilization habits. Older persons resident in the northern zones of the country and less educated persons displayed poorer oral hygiene practices. The study findings suggest that there is low oral health service utilization among adult Nigerians and that socio-demographic variables influence oral health utilization habits and oral hygiene behavior among adult Nigerians Further studies to identify other factors influencing oral health behavior are suggested.
PMCID: PMC4258058  PMID: 25427860
Socio-demographic factors; Oral health; Oral hygiene; Toothbrushing; Dental attendance; Nigerians
7.  Relationships between self-rated oral health, subjective symptoms, oral health behavior and clinical conditions in Japanese university students: a cross-sectional survey at Okayama University 
BMC Oral Health  2013;13:62.
Self-rated oral health is a valid and useful summary indicator of overall oral health status and quality of life. However, few studies on perception of oral health have been conducted among Japanese young adults. This study investigated whether oral health behavior, subjective oral symptoms, or clinical oral status were associated with self-rated oral health in Japanese young adults.
This cross-sectional survey included 2,087 students (1,183 males, 904 females), aged 18 and 19 years, at Okayama University, Japan. A self-administered questionnaire was distributed and an oral examination was performed.
In a structural equation modeling analysis, the score of decayed, missing and filled teeth (DMFT) significantly affected self-rated oral health (p <0.05) and the effect size was highest. Malocclusion, subjective symptoms of temporomandibular disorders (TMD) and stomatitis, and poor oral health behavior significantly induced self-rated poor oral health with small effect sizes (p <0.05). Clinical periodontal conditions and Oral Hygiene Index-simplified were not related to self-rated oral health.
Self-rated oral health was influenced by subjective symptoms of TMD and stomatitis, oral health behavior, the score of DMFT, and malocclusion. The evaluation of these parameters may be a useful approach in routine dental examination to improve self-rated oral health in university students.
PMCID: PMC4228361  PMID: 24195632
Young adults; Self-rated oral health; Malocclusion; Temporomandibular disorders; Stomatitis; Behavioral sciences
8.  Association between the longest job and oral health: Japan Gerontological Evaluation Study project cross-sectional study 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:130.
Inequality in oral health is a major challenge. Oral diseases and their risk factors accumulate throughout life. The objective of this cross-sectional study was to examine the association of longest job with oral health status and oral health behavior among older Japanese.
Subjects were a total of 23,191 (11,310 males and 11,881 females) community-dwelling individuals aged 65 or over, living independently and able to perform daily activities from 30 municipalities across Japan. The outcome variables were oral health status (number of teeth, use of denture or bridge and subjective oral health status) and oral health behavior (dental visit for treatment and use of interdental brush or dental floss). The longest job was used as an explanatory variable. Age, educational attainment, equivalent income, and densities of dentists and population in municipalities were used as covariates. Two-level (first level: individual, second level: municipality) multilevel Poisson regression analyses were performed for each sex.
Multilevel Poisson regression analyses showed that all variables of oral health status and oral health behavior were significantly associated with longest job after adjusting for all covariates except denture/bridge use and dental visit for females. People whose longest jobs were sales/service, skilled/labor, agriculture/forestry/fishery or others, or who had no occupation were more likely to have poor oral health status and oral health behavior compared to those whose longest jobs were professional/technical.
The longest job may be one of the major determinants of oral health status and oral health behavior in Japanese older people.
PMCID: PMC4223744  PMID: 25345714
Longest job; Oral health status; Oral health behavior; Older people; Cross-sectional study
9.  Risk indicators for severe impaired oral health among indigenous Australian young adults 
BMC Oral Health  2010;10:1.
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.
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).
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).
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.
PMCID: PMC2827466  PMID: 20102640
10.  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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
PMCID: PMC1190187  PMID: 16042806
11.  Oral health status and oral health knowledge, attitudes and behavior among rural children in Shaanxi, western China: a cross-sectional survey 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:144.
The current oral health status and possible dental risk factors among children in rural Shaanxi Province, western China are unreported. This study aimed to describe the oral health status and to analyze the possible risk factors for the oral health status in this population.
A multi-stage cluster sampling method was used to survey 12- to 15-year-olds and 4- to 6-year-olds in villages in Shaanxi Province. The structured questionnaires were provided to the 12- to 15-year-olds and to the caregivers of the 4- to 6-year-olds to collect information on the subjects’ oral health knowledge, attitudes and behavior. A clinical examination was performed to assess dental caries and gingival bleeding (only 12- to 15-year-olds). SPSS 17.0 statistical software was used to analyze the data.
The decayed, missing, filled teeth (DMFT) index scores of 12- to 15-year-olds and 4-to 6-year-olds averaged 0.45 and 3.05, respectively. The caries prevalence was 23.9% in 12- to 15-year-olds and 67% in 4-to 6-year-olds. Additionally, 45.2% of the 12- to 15-year-olds had gingival bleeding and 62.8% had calculus. The oral health knowledge of the subjects was generally poor, whereas they held very positive attitudes toward oral health. A low number of participants reported that they brushed their teeth at least twice daily. Moreover, a statistically significant relationship was found between oral health knowledge scores, tooth brushing frequency and DMFT scores as well as gingival bleeding in the 12- to 15-year-olds. Frequency of sweets consumption was strongly related to dmft scores in the 4- to 6-year-olds.
The oral health status, oral health knowledge and behaviors among village children in Shaanxi Province are poor. Oral health education to improve oral health knowledge and to increase the frequency of tooth brushing should be undertaken in the rural schools in western China.
PMCID: PMC4349707  PMID: 25433658
Oral health status; Risk factors; Village children; Western China
12.  Associations between Indigenous Australian oral health literacy and self-reported oral health outcomes 
BMC Oral Health  2010;10:3.
To determine oral health literacy (REALD-30) and oral health literacy-related outcome associations, and to calculate if oral health literacy-related outcomes are risk indicators for poor self-reported oral health among rural-dwelling Indigenous Australians.
468 participants (aged 17-72 years, 63% female) completed a self-report questionnaire. REALD-30 and oral health literacy-related outcome associations were determined through bivariate analysis. Multivariate modelling was used to calculate risk indicators for poor self-reported oral health.
REALD-30 scores were lower among those who believed teeth should be infrequently brushed, believed cordial was good for teeth, did not own a toothbrush or owned a toothbrush but brushed irregularly. Tooth removal risk indicators included being older, problem-based dental attendance and believing cordial was good for teeth. Poor self-rated oral health risk indicators included being older, healthcare card ownership, difficulty paying dental bills, problem-based dental attendance, believing teeth should be brushed infrequently and irregular brushing. Perceived need for dental care risk indicators included being female and problem-based dental attendance. Perceived gum disease risk indicators included being older and irregular brushing. Feeling uncomfortable about oro-facial appearance risk indicators included problem-based dental attendance and irregular brushing. Food avoidance risk indicators were being female, difficulty paying dental bills, problem-based dental attendance and irregular brushing. Poor oral health-related quality of life risk indicators included difficulty paying dental bills and problem-based dental attendance.
REALD-30 was significantly associated with oral health literacy-related outcomes. Oral health literacy-related outcomes were risk indicators for each of the poor self-reported oral health domains among this marginalised population.
PMCID: PMC2859391  PMID: 20346124
13.  The promotion of oral health within the Healthy School context in England: a qualitative research study 
BMC Oral Health  2009;9:3.
Healthy Schools programmes may assist schools in improving the oral health of children through advocating a common risk factor approach to health promotion and by more explicit consideration of oral health. The objectives of this study were to gain a broad contextual understanding of issues around the delivery of oral health promotion as part of Healthy Schools programmes and to investigate the barriers and drivers to the incorporation of oral health promoting activities in schools taking this holistic approach to health promotion.
Semi-structured telephone interviews were carried out with coordinators of Healthy Schools programmes in the Northwest of England. Interview transcripts were coded using a framework derived from themes in the interview schedule.
All 22 Healthy Schools coordinators participated and all reported some engagement of their Healthy Schools scheme with oral health promotion. The degree of this engagement depended on factors such as historical patterns of working, partnerships, resources and priorities. Primary schools were reported to have engaged more fully with both Healthy Schools programmes and aspects of oral health promotion than secondary schools. Participants identified healthy eating interventions as the most appropriate means to promote oral health in schools. Partners with expertise in oral health were key in supporting Healthy Schools programmes to promote oral health.
Healthy Schools programmes are supporting the promotion of oral health although the extent to which this is happening is variable. Structures should be put in place to ensure that the engagement of Healthy Schools with oral health is fully supported.
PMCID: PMC2651868  PMID: 19146677
14.  Comparative clinical study testing the effectiveness of school based oral health education using experiential learning or traditional lecturing in 10 year-old children 
BMC Oral Health  2015;15:51.
School based oral health education through traditional lecturing has been found successful only in improving oral health knowledge, while has low effectiveness in oral hygiene and gingival health. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of experiential learning (EL) oral health education to traditional lecturing (TL), on enhancing oral health knowledge, attitude and behavior as well as oral hygiene, gingival health and caries of 10-year-old children.
Eighty-four children were recruited for the EL and 100 for the TL group from 3 locations in Greece. Data regarding oral health knowledge, attitude and behavior were collected via questionnaires. Data regarding dental plaque, gingivitis and caries were collected by clinical examination. The evaluation using questionnaires and clinical examination was assessed at baseline and 6 and 18 months afterwards. Two calibrated pediatric dentists examined the students using a periodontal probe and artificial light. Modified hygiene index (HI) was used for dental plaque recording, the simplified gingival index (GI-S) was used for gingivitis and DMFT, based on BASCD criteria, for dental caries. Based on a dedicated manual, the teacher applied in the classroom the oral health educational program using EL.
EL group had statistically significant better hygiene than the TL at 6 months (p < 0.05). Within the same group, both groups had enhanced oral health knowledge at 6 and 18 months (p < 0.05) and improved oral health behavior (p > 0.05) and attitude (p > 0.05) at 6 months in comparison to baseline.
EL program was found more successful than TL in oral hygiene improvement. Both oral health education programs improved the oral health knowledge, attitude and behavior of children.
Trial registration (NCT02320162).
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12903-015-0036-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4415446  PMID: 25924670
Oral health education; Experiential learning; Primary school; Oral hygiene; Traditional lecturing
15.  The midwifery initiated oral health-dental service protocol: an intervention to improve oral health outcomes for pregnant women 
BMC Oral Health  2015;15:2.
Evidence is emerging that women’s poor oral health and health practices during pregnancy are associated with poor oral health in their children and potentially an increased risk of pre-term or low-birth weight infants.
The Midwifery Initiated Oral Health-Dental Service (MIOH-DS) trial is a three arm multicentre randomised controlled trial which will recruit women from three metropolitan hospitals aimed at improving women’s oral health and service access and indirectly reducing perinatal morbidity. All three arms of the trial will deliver oral health promotion material, although a midwife oral assessment and referral to private/public/health fund dental services pathway (Intervention Group 1) and the midwife oral assessment and referral to local free public dental services pathway (Intervention Group 2) will be compared to the control group of oral health promotional material only. Midwives will undergo specific oral health education and competency testing to undertake this novel intervention.
This efficacy trial will promote a new partnership between midwives and dentists focused on enhancing the oral health of women and their infants. Should the intervention be found effective, this intervention, with existing on-line educational program for midwives, can be easily transferred into practice for large metropolitan health services within and beyond Australia. Further cost-benefit analysis is proposed to inform national health policy.
Trial registration
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12612001271897.
PMCID: PMC4324677  PMID: 25588410
Oral health; Pregnancy; Midwives; Antenatal care; Dental
16.  Correlation and comparative analysis of discriminative validity of the Scale of Oral Health Outcomes for Five-Year-Old Children (SOHO-5) and the Early Childhood Oral Health Impact Scale (ECOHIS) for dental caries 
BMC Oral Health  2015;15:29.
The perceptions of parents and children regarding oral health are useful to oral public health and clinical practice in pediatric dentistry. The primary aim of the present study was to evaluate the correlation between the total and item scores of the Scale of Oral Health Outcomes for Five-Year-Old Children (SOHO-5) (parental version and child’s self-reports) and the Early Childhood Oral Health Impact Scale (ECOHIS). Subsequently, the discriminative validity of these assessment tools regarding dental caries was compared.
One hundred twenty-one children randomly selected in the city of Diamantina (Brazil) were submitted to oral examinations. Parents answered the ECOHIS and SOHO-5p (parental version) and children answered the SOHO-5c (child’s self-reports). Statistical analysis involved the Mann–Whitney test as well as the calculation of Spearman’s correlation coefficients.
A significant correlation was found between the SOHO-5p and ECOHIS (r = 0.85), whereas no significant correlations were found between the SOHO-5c and SOHO-5p (r = 0.00) or between the SOHO-5c and ECOHIS (r = −0.41). Significant differences in the impact on quality of life were found between children with severe decay and no severe decay (caries free, with initial or established caries) both the ECOHIS and SOHO-5p (p ≤0.05), whereas no difference was found in SOHO-5c (p > 0.05).
The ECOHIS and SOHO-5p were correlated with each other. The accounts of the children differed from their parents’ reports and were not capable of discriminating dental caries in advanced stages of progression.
PMCID: PMC4359477  PMID: 25881305
Quality of life; Oral health; Preschool children
17.  Association between knowledge of caries preventive practices, preventive oral health habits of parents and children and caries experience in children resident in sub-urban Nigeria 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:156.
The objectives of this study were to assess the association between children and parents’ knowledge of caries preventive practices, the parents’ caries preventive oral health behaviours and children’s caries preventive oral health behaviour and caries experience.
Three hundred and twenty four participants aged 8–12 years, 308 fathers and 318 mothers were recruited through a household survey conducted in Suburban Nigeria. A questionnaire was administered to generate information on fathers, mothers and children’s knowledge of caries prevention measures and their oral health behaviour. Clinical examination was conducted on the children to determine their dmft/DMFT. Analysis was conducted to determine the predictors of the children’s good oral health behaviour.
The mothers’ oral health behaviours were significant predictors of the children’s oral health behaviours. Children who had good knowledge of caries prevention measures had significant increased odds of brushing their teeth twice daily or more. The children’s caries prevalence was 13.9%, the mean dmft was 0.2 and the mean DMFT was 0.09. None of the dependent variables could predict the presence of caries in children.
The study highlights the effect of maternal oral health behaviour on the oral health behaviour of children aged 8 years to 12 years in suburban Nigeria. A pilot study is needed to evaluate how enhanced maternal preventive oral health practices can improve the oral health preventive practices of children.
PMCID: PMC4279893  PMID: 25516332
Caries; Prevention; Nigeria; Fluoride; Tooth brushing; Tobacco; Sugar
18.  Oral health, socio-economic and home environmental factors associated with general and oral-health related quality of life and convergent validity of two instruments 
BMC Oral Health  2015;15:26.
The objective of this study was to evaluate the convergent validity between the domains of the Autoquestionnaire Qualité de Vie Enfant image (AUQUEI) and the Child Perceptions Questionnaire instrument (CPQ11–14) among schoolchildren and to assess the difference between socio-economic and clinical variables associated with their scores.
An analytical cross-sectional study was conducted in Juiz de Fora, Minas Gerais, Brazil, with 515 schoolchildren aged 12 years from 22 public and private schools, selected with the use of a random multistage sampling design. They were clinically examined for dental caries experience (DMFT and dmft index) and orthodontic treatments needs (DAI index) and were asked to complete the Brazilian versions of Child Perception Questionnaire (CPQ11–14) and Autoquestionnaire Qualité de Vie Enfant image (AUQUEI). In addition, a questionnaire was sent to their parents inquiring about their socio-economic status and home characteristics. The convergent validity of the Brazilian versions of CPQ11–14 and AUQUEI instruments was analyzed by Spearman’s correlation coefficients. For comparison between the summarized scores of each questionnaire with regard to the schoolchildren’s socio-environmental and clinical aspects the nonparametric Mann–Whitney was used at level of significance of 5%.
The mean DMFT index was 1.09 and 125 (24.3%) children had orthodontic treatment needs (DAI ≥ 31). There was a similarity and a weak correlation between the scores of the domains of CPQ11–14 and AUQUEI (r ranged between −0.006 and 0.0296). In addition, a significant difference was found between the scores of the two instruments according to the socio-economic variables (p < 0.05) and presence of teeth with carious lesions (p < 0.05).
The general and oral health-related quality of life instruments AUQUEI and CPQ11–14 were both found to be useful, and significant influence of socio-economic and clinical variables were detected with both instruments.
PMCID: PMC4344795  PMID: 25888507
Quality of life; Oral health; Children; AUQUEI; CPQ11–14
19.  The Fifth German Oral Health Study (Fünfte Deutsche Mundgesundheitsstudie, DMS V) – rationale, design, and methods 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:161.
Oral diseases rank among the most prevalent non-communicable diseases in modern societies. In Germany, oral epidemiological data show that both dental caries and periodontal diseases are highly prevalent, though significant improvements in oral health has been taking in the population within the last decades, particularly in children. It is, therefore, the aim of the Fifth German Oral Health Study (DMS V) to actualize the data on current oral health status and to gather information on oral health behavior and risk factors. In addition to current oral health monitoring, the study will also permit conclusions about trends in the development of oral health in Germany between 1989 and 2014.
DMS V is a cross-sectional, multi-center, nationwide representative, socio-epidemiological study to investigate the oral health status und behavior of the German resident population in four age cohorts. Study participants are children (12-year-olds), adults (35- to 44-year-olds), young olds (65- to 74-year-olds), and old olds (75- to 100-year-olds) who are drawn from local residents’ registration offices. Social-science investigation parameters concern subjective perceptions and attitudes regarding oral health and nutrition, sense of coherence, and socio-demographic data. Clinical oral parameters are tooth loss, caries and periodontitis, prosthodontic status, further developmental and acquired dental hard tissue and mucosal lesions. To ensure reproducibility, the dental investigators are trained and calibrated by experts and multiple reliability checks are performed throughout the field phase. Statistical analyses are calculated according to a detailed statistical analysis plan.
The DMS studies first performed in 1989, 1992 and repeated in 1997 and 2005 are the only cross-sectional oral health studies conducted in Germany on a population-based national representative level. Updated prevalence and trend analyses of key oral diseases are, therefore, of major epidemiological and health services research interest.
Trial registration
German Health Services Research Data Bank VfD_DMSV_13_002152
PMCID: PMC4417261  PMID: 25547464
Behavioral research; Cross-sectional studies; Dental caries; Dentistry; Epidemiology; Health care surveys; Oral health; Periodontal diseases; Prosthodontics; Sense of coherence; Social class; Social science
20.  Oral health in nursing students at Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre teaching hospital in Moshi, Tanzania 
BMC Oral Health  2015;15:23.
This study aimed to determine the prevalence and severity of dental caries, oral hygiene levels and assessment of the oral health knowledge and practices of nursing students at Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre teaching hospital in Moshi, Tanzania.
A cross-sectional survey was done on 217 student nurse population at Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre Teaching Hospital in Moshi, Tanzania in 2014. Ethical approval was obtained from the Kilimanjaro Christian Medical University College Ethical Committee. A questionnaire probing on socio-demographic characteristics, knowledge and practices on selected oral health issues was administered to the students. Students were also examined for oral hygiene and dental caries using Simplified Oral Hygiene Index (OHI-S) and WHO 1997 recommended method respectively.
There were 214 (98.6%) respondents aged between 18 and 53 years (mean age was 27.2 SD ± 7.35 years). About 72% of the respondents were in the young age group (below 31 years), 63.1% were pursuing Diploma in Nursing while the rest were pursuing Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Although oral health knowledge of the respondents was generally poor, more students pursuing Bachelor of Science in Nursing had significant adequate oral health knowledge than those who were pursuing Diploma in Nursing (p = 0.05). Population Oral Hygiene Index- Simplified was 0.41 meaning good oral hygiene in the current population. Overall, caries prevalence was 40.2%. The mean population DMFT was 1.34 (SD ± 2.44). The decay component was 0.53 (SD ± 1.29), whereas the missing component was 0.67 (SD ±1.34) and filled component was 0.14 (SD ± 0.69). Significantly more students in the older age group had more missing and filled teeth than their counterparts in the young age group (p ≤0.05).
Majority of the students in this population had good oral hygiene and a very low DMFT. There was poor basic oral health knowledge and poor recall visit to dental personnel. Curriculum development in these school programmes should strengthen or encompass comprehensive oral health education components. This will empower nursing professional with basic oral health knowledge and promotive oral health behaviors and hence to disseminate to the clients.
PMCID: PMC4367970  PMID: 25881237
Oral hygiene; Caries status; Oral health knowledge; Oral health practices; Nursing students; Tanzania
21.  Evaluation of a Russian version of the oral health literacy instrument (OHLI) 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:141.
Oral health literacy has become a popular research area in the last decade; however, to date no health literacy instruments in the Russian language exist. The objectives of this study were to develop a Russian version of the Oral Health Literacy Instrument (OHLI) and to examine its reliability and validity.
A convenience sample of patients who visited the dental division of the district hospital in Belarus was used in the study. The OHLI, created originally in English, was modified to adapt it to characteristics of routine dental services in Belarus and then translated into Russian, followed by back-translation. Participants completed a self-administered socio-demographic questionnaire, an oral health knowledge test and the Russian version of the OHLI (R-OHLI). Bivariate and multivariate statistical analyses, including multiple regression modeling, were performed to examine reliability and validity of the R-OHLI.
Participants were 281 adult patients aged from 18 to 60 years, with a mean age of 33.1 ± 12.2; 64.1% of them were women. Cronbach’s alpha values for the two sections (reading comprehension and numeracy) and the total R-OHLI were 0.853, 0.815 and 0.895, respectively. The mean total R-OHLI score was 77.2 ± 14.5; the mean reading comprehension and numeracy scores were 39.5 ± 7.5 and 37.8 ± 8.8, respectively. The R-OHLI was significantly correlated to the oral health knowledge test. Pearson’s correlation coefficients between the oral health knowledge test and the reading comprehension, numeracy and total R-OHLI were 0.401, 0.258, and 0.363, respectively (p < 0.001). Women, participants with a university degree, and those who visited a dentist at least once a year had significantly (p < 0.05) higher mean scores for each section (reading comprehension, numeracy) and for total R-OHLI compared to their counterparts.
The R-OHLI showed good internal consistency and test-retest reliability. It was significantly associated with the oral health knowledge test, socio-demographic and behavioral factors. Therefore, the R-OHLI was proved to be a reliable and valid oral health literacy instrument for Russian-speaking people.
PMCID: PMC4280741  PMID: 25430803
Oral health literacy; Oral health literacy instrument (OHLI); Russian version; Validation studies
22.  School-based strategies for oral health education of adolescents- a cluster randomized controlled trial 
BMC Oral Health  2012;12:54.
Oral health education (OHE) in schools has largely been imparted by dental professionals. Considering the substantial cost of this expert-led approach, the strategies relying on teachers, peer-leaders and learners themselves have also been utilized. However the evidence for comparative effectiveness of these strategies is lacking in the dental literature. The present study was conducted to compare the effectiveness of dentist-led, teacher-led, peer-led and self-learning strategies of oral health education.
A two-year cluster randomized controlled trial following a parallel design was conducted. It involved five groups of adolescents aged 10-11 years at the start of the study. The trial involved process as well as four outcome evaluations. The present paper discusses the findings of the study pertaining to the baseline and final outcome evaluation, both comprising of a self-administered questionnaire, a structured interview and clinical oral examination. The data were analyzed using Generalized Estimating Equations.
All the three educator-led strategies of OHE had statistically higher mean oral health knowledge (OHK), oral health behavior (OHB), oral hygiene status (OHS) and combined knowledge, behavior and oral hygiene status (KBS) scores than the self-learning and control groups (p<0.001). The mean OHK, OHS and KBS scores of the three educator-led strategies did not differ significantly. The peer-led strategy was, however, found to have a significantly better OHB score than the respective score of the teacher-led strategy (p<0.05). The self-learning group had significantly higher OHB score than the control group (p<0.05) but the OHK, OHS and KBS scores of the two groups were not significantly different.
The dentist-led, teacher-led and peer-led strategies of oral health education are equally effective in improving the oral health knowledge and oral hygiene status of adolescents. The peer-led strategy, however, is almost as effective as the dentist-led strategy and comparatively more effective than the teacher-led and self-learning strategies in improving their oral health behavior.
Trail registration
PMCID: PMC3552898  PMID: 23249443
Oral health education; Dental health education; Oral health promotion; Prevention; Oral diseases; Peer-led; Teacher-led; Dentist-led
23.  Oral health knowledge and behavior among male health sciences college students in Kuwait 
BMC Oral Health  2003;3:2.
Health auxiliary personnel have an important role in oral health promotion when they graduate and start working in the health care system. This study aims to find out oral health knowledge and oral health behavior of male Health Sciences College students.
A questionnaire was distributed to all students at the male Health Sciences College in Kuwait (N = 153) during the academic year 2001/2002. The students filled the anonymous questionnaire in the class after the lecture. The response rate was 84% (n = 128). The questions consisted information on the general background, oral health behavior and oral health knowledge.
Oral health knowledge seemed to be limited and very few background factors were associated with it. More than half of the students had visited a dentist during the previous 12 months, but only one third of students were brushing twice a day or more often.
It may be concluded that the male Health Sciences College students seemed to have appropriate knowledge on some oral health topics, but limited knowledge on the others. Their toothbrushing practices are still far behind the international recommendation (twice a day) and also the knowledge, why it should be done so frequently also very limited.
PMCID: PMC156614  PMID: 12735791
Oral health behavior; Oral health knowledge; Students
24.  Scandinavian systems monitoring the oral health in children and adolescents; an evaluation of their quality and utility in the light of modern perspectives of caries management 
BMC Oral Health  2014;14:43.
Recording reliable oral health data is a challenge. The aims were a) to outline different Scandinavian systems of oral health monitoring, b) to evaluate the quality and utility of the collected data in the light of modern concepts of disease management and to suggest improvements.
Material and methods
The information for in this study was related to (a) children and adolescents, (b) oral health data and (c) routines for monitoring such data. This meant information available in the official web sites of the “KOSTRA-data” (Municipality-State-Report) in Norway, the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare (“Socialstyrelsen”) and Oral Health Register (the SCOR system, National Board of Health) in Denmark.
A potential for increasing the reliability and validity of the data existed. Routines for monitoring other oral diseases than caries were limited. Compared with the other Scandinavian countries, the data collection system in Denmark appeared more functional and had adopted more modern concepts of disease management than other systems. In the light of modern concepts of caries management, data collected elsewhere had limited utility.
The Scandinavian systems of health reporting had much in common, but some essential differences existed. If the quality of epidemiological data were enhanced, it would be possible to use the data for planning oral health care. Routines and procedures should be improved and updated in accordance with the modern ideas about caries prevention and therapy. For appropriate oral health planning in an organised dental service, reporting of enamel caries is essential.
PMCID: PMC4013538  PMID: 24885243
Oral health reporting; Oral health care; Child; Caries epidemiology and adolescents
25.  Oral health of visually impaired schoolchildren in Khartoum State, Sudan 
BMC Oral Health  2013;13:33.
Although oral health care is a vital component of overall health, it remains one of the greatest unattended needs among the disabled. The aim of this study was to assess the oral health status and oral health-related quality of life (Child-OIDP in 11-13-year-old) of the visually challenged school attendants in Khartoum State, the Sudan.
A school-based survey was conducted in Al-Nour institute [boys (66.3%), boarders (35.9%), and children with partial visual impairment (PVI) (44.6%)]. Two calibrated dentists examined the participants (n=79) using DMFT/dmft, Simplified Oral Hygiene Index (OHI-S), dental care index, and traumatic dental injuries (TDI) index. Oral health related quality of life (C-OIDP) was administered to 82 schoolchildren.
Caries experience was 46.8%. Mean DMFT (age≥12, n=33) was 0.4 ± 0.7 (SiC 1.6), mean dmft (age<12, n=46) was 1.9 ±2.8 (SiC 3.4), mean OHIS 1.3 ± 0.9. Care Index was zero. One fifth of the children suffered TDI (19%). Almost one third (29%) of the 11–13 year old children reported an oral impact on their daily performances. A quarter of the schoolchildren (25.3%) required an urgent treatment need. Analysis showed that children with partial visual impairment (PVI) were 6.3 times (adjusted) more likely to be diagnosed with caries compared to children with complete visual impairment (CVI), and children with caries experience were 1.3 times (unadjusted) more likely to report an oral health related impact on quality of life.
Visually impaired schoolchildren are burdened with oral health problems, especially caries. Furthermore, the 11-13 year olds' burden with caries showed a significant impact on their quality of life.
PMCID: PMC3720199  PMID: 23866155
Visually impaired children; Oral health; Oral health-related quality of life

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