Adult dental surveys: a different approach

J. E. Clarkson, H. V. Worthington, P. J. Holloway

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Traditional surveys of adult dental health have used calibrated examiners to collect clinical data. This study examines an alternative approach using data collected by general dental practitioners about their adult patients. Twenty-four dentists in Greater Manchester recorded both personal and intra-oral information on 3,832 of their regularly attending dentate patients over 24 years of age. The mean numbers of filled teeth, sound teeth and the proportion of patients with 21 or more teeth were all similar to those found in the 1988 United Kingdom national survey of adult dental health. For example, the mean number of filled teeth in the 25-34 year age group was 11.7 compared with 11.9 for subjects who claimed to attend regularly in the 1988 national survey, and these figures reduced to 11.2 and 10.0 in the 55-64 year age group. The proportion of adults with 21 or more teeth was found to be 99 per cent compared with 98 per cent in the 1988 survey for the 25-34 year age group, falling to 55 per cent compared with 56 per cent in the 55-64 year age group. The collection of epidemiological data by general dental practitioners is feasible, and has construct and internal validity. It is a possible alternative to conventional surveys of adult dental health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-69
Number of pages5
JournalCommunity Dental Health
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Dentistry
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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