Author(s): Herndon JB, Tomar SL, Lossius MN, Catalanotto FA
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: To examine the relationships among pediatricians' and family physicians' oral health training, knowledge, confidence, and practice patterns. STUDY DESIGN: A survey of physicians identified through the membership databases of the Florida Academy of Family Physicians and the Florida Pediatric Society was conducted in 2008. Responses of pediatricians and family physicians were compared through bivariate and multivariate analyses. RESULTS: Although training was not directly associated with performing recommended practices, there were positive associations between training and confidence and between confidence and performing recommended practices (P <.05). Pediatricians were more likely than family physicians to answer fluoride-related knowledge questions correctly and reported greater confidence (P <.05). Less than 20\% of the respondents reported counseling parents about bringing their child to the dentist before age 1 year or inquiring about the parents' dental health. CONCLUSIONS: Oral health training appears to promote confidence in performing recommended oral health practices. Differences in fluoride knowledge by provider type suggest that fluoride guidance has been disseminated more effectively among pediatricians than among family physicians. Educational content of oral health training programs should place increased emphasis on current fluoride guidance, early dental visits, and assessing parents' oral health. Instructional methods should address physicians' confidence, particularly among family physicians. Copyright © 2010 Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.
This article was published in J Pediatr
and referenced in Pediatric Dental Care