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Promoting Regular Dental Attendance in Problem-Orientated Dental Attenders: A Systematic Review of Potential Interventions

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Charlotte CurrieORCiD, Professor Vera Araujo-SoaresORCiD, Simon Stone, Fiona Beyer, Professor Justin DurhamORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Background: Problem-orientated dental attenders account for around one-third of the UK population, these being patients who do not seek regular dental care, instead only attending with dental pain. In order to develop intervention(s) to encourage regular dental attendance in these patients any previous intervention development should be identified to aid idea generation or retrofitting of interventions. Objective: To identify previous interventions which have been developed targeted at problem-orientated dental attenders to facilitate the development and co-design of a new intervention. Methods: Eight electronic databases were searched for studies which included an intervention targeted at adult problem-orientated or irregular dental attenders to encourage regular dental attendance. Data on the intervention design mapped to the theoretical domains’ framework were extracted, alongside effectiveness and patient views where available. Results: Three studies fitted the inclusion criteria for the review. Interventions identified were attendance at a dental anxiety clinic, and a large advertising campaign promoting a free dental update where members of the public could visit local dental practices to look around and meet the dentists. One study looked at the effect of policy change by introducing free dental check-ups in Scotland. Interventions were poorly reported, with significant omissions in their description and a lack of clear identification of what composed the intervention. Conclusion: There are very few interventions developed targeted at problem-orientated dental attendance, but important areas to consider in future intervention development include: dentist communication; dentist-patient relationship; increasing the awareness of need; the effect of free dental check-ups.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Currie CC, Araujo-Soares V, Stone SJ, Beyer F, Durham J

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Oral Rehabilitation

Year: 2021

Volume: 48

Issue: 10

Pages: 1183-1191

Print publication date: 01/10/2021

Online publication date: 16/08/2021

Acceptance date: 12/08/2021

Date deposited: 12/08/2021

ISSN (print): 0305-182X

ISSN (electronic): 1365-2842

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/joor.13244


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