Int J Evidence-Based Practice Dent Hygienist 2 (2016), No. 3 13. Sep. 2016
Background: This article critically appraises a systematic review that was commissioned by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) to evaluate the effectiveness of different approaches within dental practices for promoting oral health.
Clinical question: Is the promotion of oral health within a dental practice effective and how can its effects be optimized?
Summary of methods: A search of 20 online resources was conducted. Additionally, a call for evidence was issued and the researchers hand searched the references of three relevant systematic reviews. A total of 44 studies pulled from 52 papers were included.
Critical appraisal: Based on current research standards, this was a well-conducted systematic review. The AMSTAR measurement tool was used to assess the systematic review and indicated that all necessary qualities of a credible review were present.
Practical implications: There is strong evidence for the use of psychologic and behavioral models for effectively providing oral health messages for improvement of gingival and oral health. There is also strong evidence that patients' knowledge levels can be improved by receiving oral health education verbally, from a leaflet, and from written oral health education materials; however, of all these educational methods, there is no evidence that leaflets are effective in changing people's behavior. Moderate evidence was found that patients' motivation and satisfaction are dependent on the oral health professional's communication skills and ability to build relationships with their patients. There is also moderate evidence that a message sender or receiver's attitude and beliefs about oral health promotion can act as either a barrier to or a facilitator for the effectiveness of oral health education.