Pediatricians have an important role in children's oral health. However, there have been no reviews that have brought together evidence on the knowledge and practice of pediatricians regarding children's oral health. This review addresses this gap. The findings demonstrate that pediatricians have limited knowledge and understanding in critical areas, including; initial clinical signs of dental caries, recommended age for first dental visit, the transmission of bacteria from mother to child in the etiology of dental caries, and recommended use of fluorides. Barriers to oral health practice for pediatricians include inadequate education and training, time constraints in practice, lack of referral pathways, and cost implications that are often compounded by complicated medical/dental insurance schemes. Addressing gaps in education and training and action on other barriers must be a priority. There is a need for the development of a well-designed validated tool to assess knowledge and practice. This scoping review provides a useful starting point to guide future research and areas for focused, systematic reviews.
AAP: American Academy of Pediatrics; WHO: World Health Organization; UN: United Nations
Thank you to Rosetta Moors for assisting with the searches and other data collection tasks.
All phases of this study were supported by a grant from the Alliance for a Cavity Free Future (ACFF) Colgate Grant Number 0001025758.
Availability of data and materials
All data generated or analyzed during this study are included in this published article [and its supplementary information files].
Ethics approval and consent to participate
Consent for publication
BMC Oral Health. 2020;20(211) © 2020 BioMed Central, Ltd.