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Forum Category: General Dentistry

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Evidence-Based Dentistry

According to the American Dental Association, Evidence-Based Dentistry (EBD) is “an approach to oral health that requires the judicious integration of systematic assessments of clinically relevant scientific evidence, relating to the patient’s oral and medical condition and history, with the dentist’s clinical expertise and the patient’s treatment needs and preferences”. Evidence-based decisions must be more circular in nature than traditional decisions, as they must simultaneously take into account scientific evidence, clinical experience, and patient preferences, rather than the traditional “Condition AàTreatment BàOutcome” approach. In EBD, research evidence should be used to guide, rather than dictate clinical approaches.

Each year, the ADA holds an Evidence-Based Dentistry Champions Conference, with the goal of recruiting and training dental professionals throughout the United States in EBD approaches and applications, and how to apply these principles in clinical-decision making.
What has your experience with EBD to date? How have your instructors helped you apply this approach toward one of your clinic patients? How do you compare EBD to traditional "conditionally defined" treatment options? 
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Evidence-Based Dentistry

12:08 AM | Mar 08,2016
After 1 year of clinical experience, I've come to find that my favorite EBD to share with patients is the link between oral infections and systemic diseases. It's true that patient's are becoming more educated about dental procedures, but I find that a majority lack basic concepts of health and fail to understand that the body is a single entity of interacting systems. When I tell patients that the active disease occurring in their mouth may be having a direct impact on their arthritic knees and elbows or putting them at higher risk of heart disease, their ears tend to perk up a bit more. I have one example from this past month that I think is worth sharing. A patient first presented with poor oral health and needed limited SRP in all 4 quadrants. Her BOP score and plaque index were near 100%. In laymen terms, I explained to her that it would be important to get her periodontal condition stable before we started addressing other needed in her mouth. Soon after, she noted that she was pregnant and would just like to take care of a few cosmetic issues before becoming too busy with pregnancy. After explaining to her the risk of poor oral health on her developing fetus, she quickly became much more concerned with her oral hygiene and her home care improved drastically.

Evidence-Based Dentistry

11:57 PM | Dec 17,2015
I definitely agree. I’ve noticed that in the population we treat, many more individuals are taking a greater interest in their dental care. They often ask, “What are my other options?” or “What are the differences between my options.” To best answer this, EBD is a must. At school, much of what we learn is based on research, and it really does help when talking to the patients and making treatment decisions.

Evidence-Based Dentistry

08:36 PM | Dec 01,2014
Another important element to consider, especially in a field like dentistry, is who funded the research that you are using to back up your clinical decisions. There is definitely a concern about bias when the research on a product or material is put out by the manufacturer. Just something important to consider!

Evidence-Based Dentistry

05:21 PM | Dec 01,2014
In my first year of dental school, we had a 9 week class dedicated to evidence-based dentistry. We learned about the PICO principle, and we learned the different types of research and which types are more accurate and better to use. We also had scheduled class debates about specific dental-related topics in which we had to apply EBD concepts in order to defend our side. For example, one debate was using digital radiography versus film radiography. These debates required us to learn how to properly research data and apply the EBD approach. I'm looking forward to being in clinic and applying EBD in a clinical setting.

Evidence-Based Dentistry

07:39 PM | Sep 29,2014
I think EBD is critically important to treating patients. We have been introduced to this idea many times at our school, and since starting in the clinic, have been required to write reflections about specific instances where this methodology could be put to use. The one thing I have found difficult, however, is finding a good approach to locate relevant research as well as understanding the format it is being presented in. Can anyone chime in on their approach to finding good research, as well as explaining the different types of research (i.e. meta analysis, double-blind study etc...)? Thanks!

Evidence-Based Dentistry

08:58 AM | Aug 27,2013
I have really only started hearing about EBD recently. Haven't had the chance to use this approach in clinics yet, but hopefully soon!