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Int J Paediatr Dent. 1998 Dec;8(4):235-42.

Whither paediatric dentistry?

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Department of Child Dental Health, Dental School, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.


The objective of the British Society of Paediatric Dentistry is to promote the oral health of children. This objective is discussed from four different aspects. First, it is necessary to quantify the dental needs of children and to appreciate how these needs have changed over the last 20 years. Using information from national dental surveys, changes between 1973 and 1993 in the prevalence of dental caries, periodontal disease, accidental damage to anterior teeth and occlusal problems, are summarized. Secondly, the development in consultant posts and the specialty of paediatric dentistry are discussed. The impact of research gradings given to Dental Schools in Britain is the third aspect to be considered and its possible effect on research topics directly relevant to improving the oral health of children. Lastly the effect of public perceptions on our specialty must be considered. Although paediatric dentists may not hit the headlines, the public must be convinced that good oral health is the birthright of every child and that we are dedicated to preventing and treating oral disease in children.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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