Publication Date

12-1-2005

Degree Type

Master's Project

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Nursing

First Advisor

Daryl Canham

Second Advisor

Virginia Young-Cureton

Abstract

Pediatric dental disease is a silent epidemic (Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, 2002). Dental decay is commonly unrecognized and under-treated, and can affect children's growth and development as well as their ability to perform in school. Effective interventions to prevent dental decay include water fluoridation, dental sealants, pediatric dental screenings, and dental health education programs. This pre-experimental design study evaluated the effectiveness of an oral health training program for school nurses. This training program was designed based on the First 5 California <;>ral Health Training Program (2003). A non-randomized sample of fourteen (N=l4) school nurses participated in the presentation. Pre and post test results indicated a statistically significant (p<.O I) increase in oral health knowledge among the participants. As a result of this study, the researchers recommend that school nurses receive formal training in dental health assessments to effectively contribute to the improvement of pediatric oral health in the school setting.

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