June 2017

Volume 34, Issue 2

Public health intervention over four decades for the children in the Australian Capital Territory: Have we reached the point of diminishing returns?

Authors: I. Sohal E. Kruger M. Tennant
doi: 10.1922/CDH_3997Sohal04


Background: Most of the developed world has seen some substantial improvements in the dental health of children over the past four decades owing to advances in service access, fluoride exposure, socio-economic development and improved diets, with the DMFT score of 12 year-olds dropping from well over 10 down to around one. Aim: To examine the question of advancing dental health for children even further using the same set of tools as we have to date by asking the question: Have we come to a point of diminishing returns? The study examines the long-term, near optimum settings of the known public dental health variables in the Australian Capital Territory. Results: Despite having the most ideal and persistent dental health optimised situation, there remains underlying dental caries at a severity level of just below 1 DMFT (12 year olds), and over the last decade the rate of diminishing incidence and prevalence of decay has slowed and arguably stopped. Conclusion: This suggests that rather than toiling to eliminate dental decay completely, the focus might usefully be reoriented towards those small known pockets of society with persistent higher levels of disease and looking for new ways to address these difficult clusters, while simultaneously advancing the understanding that a small residual level of decay will always exist in society. Key words: oral health, dental health, intervention, socioeconomics, geographic information system, Australia


Other articles in this issue

Article Pages Access
Factors affecting dental fluorosis in low socioeconomic status children in Mexico 66-71 Download
Use of Jamaican Sign language in the provision of dental health care 72-76 Download
Communities in action: developing a dental ambassador training programme for adults with learning disability 77-79 Download
Improving Care for Bariatric Dental Patients in North Wales 80-83 Download
Public health intervention over four decades for the children in the Australian Capital Territory: Have we reached the point of diminishing returns? 84-87 Download
Relationship between mental health risk factors and oral symptoms in adolescents: Korea Youth Risk Behavior Webbased Survey, 2013 88-92 Download
What proportion of caries into dentine at age 5 is present at age 3? 93-96 Download
PeP-SCOT a health coaching intervention for people in prisons: the development of the intervention protocol 97-101 Download
Productive efficiency and its determinants in the Community Dental Service in the north-west of England 102-106 Download
Caries prevalence and treatment needs in young people in Portugal: the third national study 107-111 Download
Socio-demographic and area-related factors associated with the prevalence of caries among preschool children in Greece. 112-117 Download
Dental caries experience, rather than toothbrushing, influences the incidence of dental caries in young Japanese adults 118-121 Download
Ethnic Disparities in Oral Health Related Quality of Life among Adults in London, England 122-127 Download


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