The impact of oral conditions on children in England, Wales and Northern Ireland 2013

Vahid Ravaghi, Richard Holmes, Jimmy Steele, George Tsakos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
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Background: The 2013 Children’s Dental Health survey is the fifth in a series of national surveys.
Aim: To summarise key findings on oral health perceptions, oral symptoms, and the impacts of oral conditions on the daily life of children and their families. Methodology: A representative sample of children (aged 5, 8 12 and 15 years) and their parents in England, Wales and Northern Ireland completed relevant questionnaires.
Results: Oral symptoms, even more profound ones such as toothache, were prevalent among all age groups. Overall, 58% of 12- and 45% of 15-year-olds reported at least one oral impact in the past three months. The most prevalent oral impact was feeling embarrassed to smile or laugh, followed by difficulty eating. These symptoms and oral impacts were disproportionately high among children eligible for free school meals. Furthermore, one fifth to one third of parents reported that their children’s oral conditions had some impact on their family life.
Conclusion: Oral symptoms were common and oral conditions had a negative impact on the quality of life of large proportions of children. There were clear and marked socioeconomic inequalities, with considerably worse oral health perceptions and higher levels of oral impacts among the more deprived children.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173 - 178
JournalBritish Dental Journal
Publication statusPublished - 26 Aug 2016


  • Epidemiology
  • Dental public health
  • Paediatric dentistry


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