Exploring child dental service use among migrant families in Metropolitan Melbourne

Christian, B. et al. (2015) Exploring child dental service use among migrant families in Metropolitan Melbourne. Australian Dental Journal, 60(2), pp. 200-204. (doi: 10.1111/adj.12321) (PMID:25989365)

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Background: This study describes and explores factors related to dental service use among migrant children. Methods: A cross-sectional analysis of baseline data from Teeth Tales, an exploratory trial implementing a community based child oral health promotion intervention. The sample size and target population was 600 families with 1–4 year old children from Iraqi, Lebanese and Pakistani backgrounds residing in metropolitan Melbourne. Participants were recruited into the study using purposive and snowball sampling techniques. Results: Most (88%; 550/625) children had never visited the dentist (mean (SD) age 3.06 years (1.11)). In the fully adjusted model the variable most significantly associated with child dental visiting was parent reported ‘no reason for child to visit the dentist’ (OR = 0.07, p < 0.001). Of those children whose parents reported their child had no reason to visit the dentist, 22% (37/165) experienced dental caries with 8% (13/165) at the level of cavitation. Conclusions: Dental service use by migrant preschool children was very low. The relationship between perceived dental need and dental service use is currently not aligned. One in 10 children of select migrant background had visited a dentist, which is in the context of 1 in 3 with dental caries. To improve utilization, health services should consider organizational cultural competence, outreach and increased engagement with the migrant community.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Moore, Professor Laurence
Authors: Christian, B., Young, D., Gibbs, L., de Silva, A., Gold, L., Riggs, E., Calache, H., Tadic, M., Hall, M., Moore, L., and Waters, E.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:Australian Dental Journal
ISSN (Online):1834-7819

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
727631SPHSU Core Renewal: Relationships & Health Improvement Research ProgrammeLisa McDaidMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/11IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU
727661SPHSU Core Renewal: Complexity in Health Improvement Research ProgrammeLaurence MooreMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/14IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU