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Title When Controlling for Other Factors, There is No Significant Relationship Between Parents’ Oral Health Literacy and the Oral Health of Their Children
Clinical Question In children, does improving the oral health literacy (OHL) of the parents decrease the risk of dental caries and need for future restorations compared to solely educating the child on good oral health practices?
Clinical Bottom Line When comparing the oral health of children with oral health literate and illiterate parents, research showed that when controlling for other factors the oral health and quality of life of children was not increased due to the OHL of their parent. In contrast, parents with low OHL were associated with twice the risk of missed dental appointments.
Best Evidence (you may view more info by clicking on the PubMed ID link)
PubMed ID Author / Year Patient Group Study type
(level of evidence)
#1) 28163858Khodadadi/2016384 children aged 21 months to 84 monthsCross-Sectional Study
Key resultsChildren of the inadequate oral health-literate parents displayed increases in caries and restorations. Parents with inadequate OHL had children with more dental caries (p=0.005); however this relationship had no significance while controlling for background factors. Table 2 shows that when the investigators controlled for other factors (parents' education, employment, etc.) the significant relationship between inadequate parental OHL and children’s caries disappeared (p=0.13). Children of parents with inadequate OHL had significantly more dental fillings (p=0.02, 95% CI: 0.08 to 1.05).
#2) 26612050Brega/20151016 Parent-Child DyadsCluster Randomized Trial
Key results“Parents with higher health literacy scores…rated their children as having significantly better POQL (p < 0.01). Health literacy was not significantly related to dmfs or pediatric OHS.” POQL = pediatric oral health-related quality of life.
#3) 27497866Baskaradoss/2016150 (50 case patients and 100 control patients) respondentsCase Control Study
Key resultsPatients who were oral health illiterate missed more dental appointments than the literate patients, which resulted in incomplete or delayed treatment plans. “Low oral health literacy was associated with a 2-fold increase in the risk of having missed appointments (adjusted odds ratio, 2.38; 95% confidence interval, 1.05-5.40).”
Evidence Search oral health literacy AND children
Comments on
The Evidence
In the Khodadadi study, oral health literacy was gauged from a questionnaire that parents of pediatric patients filled out while their child was examined. Then their responses were analyzed against the amount of caries and fillings were already present in each patient. This allowed for the elimination of potential inconsistencies between the subjects. The Baskaradoss/2016 study began with similar patients groups. The cluster randomization in Brega/2016 reduces one source of bias via cross-contamination between children. This was executed randomizing either the test or control group in each Head Start Center. Perspective: Aiming to improve the oral health literacy of the parent can significantly improve the child’s current oral health and future dental hygiene. When directly analyzing the evidence, it does not show that educating the parents directly correlated to improved pediatric related quality of dental health. However, OHL literate patients did miss more appointments. As a future practitioner, providing oral health literacy can result in a financial benefit since oral health literate patients miss less appointments however there is not significant evidence to conclude that educating the parents of my pediatric patients will improve their dental related quality of life.
Applicability There is no direct research to prove that improving the oral health literacy of the parents of pediatric patients will directly improve the oral health of their children. However, oral health illiterate parents are more likely to miss dental appointments which could result in a financial loss to practitioners as well as a delay in treatment for children.
Specialty/Discipline (Public Health) (General Dentistry) (Pediatric Dentistry)
Keywords Oral Health Literacy, Parental Involvement, Pediatric Dentistry
ID# 3225
Date of submission: 04/27/2017spacer
E-mail tapangank@livemail.uthscsa.edu
Author Kara Tapangan
Co-author(s) e-mail
Faculty mentor/Co-author Suman Challa, BDS, MS
Faculty mentor/Co-author e-mail challas@uthscsa.edu
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