Development and integration of oral health services for preschool-age children

Pediatr Dent. 2005 Jul-Aug;27(4):323-30.


The purpose of this paper was to highlight 6 important considerations for developing a comprehensive strategy for optimizing the oral health of preschoolers. These considerations are based on the nature of Early Childhood Caries and the strengths and limitations of various components of the pediatric health care delivery system. Emphasized are 3 strategies for optimizing oral health care delivery for young children within the context of primary care: (1) early establishment of dental homes; (2) risk-based approaches; and (3) integration of dental and medical components of the primary care delivery system. Additional considerations are noted concerning: (1) scope of services provided by medical care personnel; (2) care coordination and referrals; (3) terminology; and (4) unresolved issues likely to have significant implications for future oral health care delivery for infants and young children.

MeSH terms

  • Child, Preschool
  • Delivery of Health Care / methods
  • Delivery of Health Care / organization & administration*
  • Dental Care for Children / methods
  • Dental Care for Children / organization & administration*
  • Dental Caries / epidemiology
  • Dental Caries / prevention & control*
  • Health Promotion / methods*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Oral Health*
  • Prevalence
  • Primary Health Care / methods