Epidemiology and outcomes of traumatic dental injuries: a review of the literature

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Dental trauma is a significant public health problem because of its frequency, impact on economic productivity and quality of life. It is not a disease and no individual is ever at zero risk of sustaining these potentially life-changing injuries. The aim of this article was to review the literature on the prevalence, incidence, aetiology, prognosis and outcomes of dental trauma. The importance of standardized reporting, oral health policy, adjunctive research methods, prevention and education will also be discussed. A search for relevant articles appearing in databases such as Medline, Cochrane and SSCI formed the basis of this review. Epidemiological studies indicate the annual incidence of dental trauma globally is at about 4.5%. Approximately one-third of children and toddlers (primary teeth) and one-fifth of adolescents and adults (permanent teeth) sustained a traumatic dental injury. The majority involved the maxillary central incisors, mainly from falls in toddlers at home and contact sport in adolescents. Despite these trends, there is considerable variation between studies within and across jurisdictions. There is a need to standardize research with a consistent approach to reporting, classification and methodology. This will improve research and form a greater basis for predicting prognosis. This research basis will assist in consent and clinical management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4-20
Number of pages17
JournalAustralian Dental Journal
Issue numberS1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2016


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