Oral health-related stigma: Describing and defining a ubiquitous phenomenon

J. Doughty (Lead / Corresponding author), M. E. Macdonald, V. Muirhead, R. Freeman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
37 Downloads (Pure)


This paper is the fourth of a series of narrative reviews to critically rethink underexplored concepts in oral health research. The series commenced with an initial commissioned framework of Inclusion Oral Health, which spawned further exploration into the social forces that undergird social exclusion and othering. The second review challenged unidimensional interpretations of the causes of inequality by bringing intersectionality theory to oral health. The third exposed how language, specifically labels, can perpetuate and (re)produce vulnerability by eclipsing the agency and power of vulnerabilised populations. In this fourth review, we revisit othering, depicted in the concept of stigma. We specifically define and conceptualize oral health-related stigma, bringing together prior work on stigma to advance the robustness and utility of this theory for oral health research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1078-1083
Number of pages6
JournalCommunity Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology
Issue number6
Early online date18 Jul 2023
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • dental health
  • psychosocial aspects of oral health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • General Dentistry


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