Background: Oral Function, Orofacial Pain, Orofacial Appearance, and Psychosocial Impact are the four oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) dimensions (4D) or areas in which oral disorders impact pediatric patients. Using their dentists' assessment, the study aimed to evaluate whether pediatric dental patients' oral health concerns fit into the 4D of the Oral Health-Related Quality of Life (OHRQoL) construct. Methods: Dentists who treat children from 32 countries and all WHO regions were selected from a web-based survey of 1580 international dentists. Dentists were asked if their pediatric patients with current or future oral health concerns fit into the 4D of the Oral Health-Related Quality of Life (OHRQoL) construct. Proportions of all pediatric patients’ oral health problems and prevention needs were computed. Findings: Data from 101 dentists treating children only and 523 dentists treating children and adults were included. For 90% of pediatric patients, their current oral health problems fit well in the four OHRQoL dimensions. For 91% of oral health problems they intended to prevent in the future were related to these dimensions as well. Both numbers increased to at least 96% when experts analyzed dentists´ explanations of why some oral health problems would not fit these four categories. Conclusions: The study revealed the four fundamental components of dental patients, i.e., the four OHRQoL dimensions (Oral Function, Orofacial Pain, Orofacial Appearance, and Psychosocial Impact) are also applicable for pediatric patients, regardless of whether they have current or future oral health concerns, and should be considered when measuring OHRQoL in the pediatric dental patient population.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research of the National Institutes of Health, USA, under the Award Numbers R01DE022331 and R01DE028059.
© 2021, The Author(s).
- Oral health
- Oral health-related quality of life
- Surveys and questionnaires