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How Knowledge, Attitudes & Beliefs Affect Oral Health

​Knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs can affect oral health in a variety of ways. For example:

  • Lack of knowledge and beliefs about primary teeth can affect willingness to seek oral health care for children.
  • Beliefs about what causes oral disease and how to prevent it can influence attitudes about adopting good oral care habits and seeking oral health care before pain occurs.
  • Fear, whether from community beliefs or from personal bad experiences, can influence attitudes about where and how to get oral health care.
  • Health and safety concerns carried from immigrants’ countries of origin impact their willingness to use readily accessible resources for good oral health such as drinking fluoridated tap water.
  • Myths and rumors combined with language barriers can prevent parents from embracing proven recommendations such as brushing a child’s teeth with a smear of fluoridated toothpaste as soon as the first tooth appears.

Additional Information:

Last Updated
Brush Up on Oral Health Newsletter (Copyright © 2013 The National Center on Health)
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.
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