Non-surgical caries treatments, particularly with silver diamine fluoride (SDF) and Hall crowns, offer alternative options for populations with barriers to conventional treatment. The researchers wanted to know to what extent these treatment options are receiving attention in oral care education for children in the United States.
To this end, an online survey with 29 questions was conducted among undergraduate departments of pediatric dentistry. The data were compared with the results of a similar survey conducted in 2015 to identify trends, reporting protocols, and identify barriers to use and potential causes for changes.
Respondents from 82 completed the study program surveys (89% response). While only 26% of respondents reported using SDF in 2015, this percentage rose sharply to 100% in 2020 (P < 0.001).
Hall crowns were part of 90% of educational programs, and 69.5% of participants used the method at least intermittently in their clinics. Long waiting times for anaesthesia (4 weeks–14 months) and sedation (1 week–12 months) treatment led to increased use of SDF and temporary restorations and Hall crowns. Guidelines supporting the use of SDF have also led to increased use of caries inhibitor. These changes are likely due to various barriers to traditional restorative care delivery. The rapid increase in learning and use of minimally invasive therapies provides clinicians with more options for managing dental caries in patients who have barriers to applying conventional treatment.
conclusion. SDF has been widely adopted by American educational institutions in education to prevent dental caries in temporary teeth and this trend appears to be extending to other non-surgical methods of treating caries.
Crystal YO, Janal MN, Yim S, Nelson TJ. Teaching and use of silver diamine fluoride crowns and hall-style crowns in pediatric dental residency programs in the United States. Am Dent Asoc 2020; 151: 755-763.