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Patient satisfaction with a postal service for occlusal splints

Lookup NU author(s): James AllisonORCiD, Dr Charlotte CurrieORCiD, Jenna Trainor, Margaret Corson, Professor Justin DurhamORCiD



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd., 2019.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Aims: Occlusal splints are an effective intervention for temporomandibular disorders, and are often used in tooth wear, for protection of extensive adhesive restorations, and as a means of applying medications to gingival conditions. Patients may be required to attend a second appointment to fit the device after impressions are taken, however some units may send the device in the post once constructed. These appliances rarely require modification to fit and are not occlusally adjusted. The aim of the present study was to assess patients’ satisfaction with a postal system for soft splints.Methods: 100 consecutive patients who had been issued with a soft occlusal splint by post immediately prior to August 2015 were sent a questionnaire assessing their satisfaction with receiving the splint in this manner.Results: The response rate was 42%. 93% of respondents reported that their splint fitted correctly and 98% reported that they had used it, with the mean length of wear being 8.7 weeks (SD: 5.7). 81% of patients reported that the splint helped “a lot” or “a little”. 83% of patients reported being “very happy” or “happy”, and 15% were “not bothered” about not seeing a clinician.Conclusions: Our results would suggest that patients are generally pleased with receiving a splint in the post. This system may allow reduced demand on services and may reduce out of pocket and time costs incurred to patients. The low response rate however may affect generalisability.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Allison JR, Currie C, Trainor J, Corson M, Durham J

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Oral Surgery

Year: 2019

Volume: 12

Issue: 3

Pages: 224-229

Print publication date: 01/08/2019

Online publication date: 02/04/2019

Acceptance date: 25/03/2019

Date deposited: 25/03/2019

ISSN (print): 1752-2471

ISSN (electronic): 1752-248X

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/ors.12415


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