Document Type : Review Article(s)
Associate Professor, Social Determinants on Oral Health Research Center AND Department of Oral Medicine, School of Dentistry, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran
PhD Student, Department of Community Dentistry, School of Dentistry, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran
Assistant Professor, Department of Community Dentistry, School of Dentistry, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran
BACKGROUND AND AIM: In today’s world, oral health literacy (OHL) plays a considerable role in the improvement of quality of life and decrease of health inequalities as one of the most important components of public health. Special attention to the measurement tools of this index is crucial to increase OHL level in the society. This study aimed to systematically review the existing validated tools used to measure OHL level in the world.
METHODS: To meet the study objectives, we searched five important electronic databases [PubMed, Web of Science (ISI), Scopus, Embase, and Google Scholar] using the keywords extracted from Medical Subject Headings (MeSH), which was completed by manual search. Afterwards, studies were screened based on the systematic review protocol and Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) diagram. Following that, the selected suitable articles were assessed to extract related information.
RESULTS: 7 main tools and 19 secondary measures as subgroups have been validated to assess OHL. Some of these tools have been translated into different languages and validated based on the nationality and culture of each region. Currently, there are different tools for measuring OHL worldwide in 13 languages, classified into three categories based on their structure. In addition, we realized that just two OHL measurement tools have been validated in Persian, so far.
CONCLUSION: The present study clearly demonstrates the need for a comprehensive and effective tool for measuring OHL. In addition, more studies must be carried out in this field. Given the gap between valid English and Persian tools, it is recommended that a standard tool be established in Persian. Efforts to address these gaps can be a prelude to further research.