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BEHANDLING-God og treffsikker diagnostikk, behandling og rehabilitering

#Care4YoungTeeth<3

Alternative title: #FriskeUngeTenner<3

Awarded: NOK 16.0 mill.

The project #Care4YoungTeeth<3 will contribute to improving the oral health of all adolescents, regardless of social, geographical or economic background. Children and adolescents' oral health has improved over the last 30 years. Nevertheless, quite a few Norwegian 18-year-olds have experienced tooth decay or other dental or oral problems like erosion or gingivitis. These problems increase when the children become teenagers, i.e. in the period when they get permanent teeth and also begin assume responsibility for brushing their teeth, flossing and fluoride use without parental assistance. Poor dental health is particularly prevalent among vulnerable groups such as families with low socio-economic status, immigrants, children whose parents have mental illnesses or children receiving help from child welfare service. At the dental clinic, the dentist or dental hygienist spends time informing adolescents about good dental care in addition to the dental and oral examination. The intervals between each visit are long, and during the consultation, the time for information is limited. We have too little knowledge about adolescents' actual oral care habits, and about what will be optimal methods for getting young people to take the best possible care of their teeth. In #Care4YoungTeeth<3 we will develop new solutions to support and motivate young people to good dental and oral health habits. New solutions can be, for example, dental health products, digital information and communication tools and service contact points. The project will also test how new solutions work in real-life situations. The new solutions will be developed in co-creative activities with the participation of the adolescents themselves, dental health professionals, product designers, service designers and researchers. New functional solutions for taking good care of their teeth as teenagers, may contribute to establish good habits in adulthood and thus reduce social inequalities in dental health.

In #Care4YoungTeeth<3 we address a major societal challenge within oral health: social inequality. This inequality is apparent from childhood and seems to persist into adulthood. The caries rate increases in adolescence, i.e. in the same period as children get permanent teeth and are expected to take more responsibility for their health habits. Poor oral health is particularly common among vulnerable groups, such as families with low socio-economic status and children in child welfare. Scientists, Public Dental Service (PDS) and oral care product industry possess limited knowledge about the underlying reasons for the adverse changes during adolescence and how to reach youth as dental patients and consumers. The adolescents themselves call for new solutions enabling them to take care of their oral health. We aim to improve oral health in adolescence, regardless of socio-economic status, living conditions or environmental factors. #Care4YoungTeeth<3 will address and directly engage adolescents aged 12-18. The overall objective is to co-create solutions targeted at adolescents enabling them to take better care of their teeth. The long-term purpose to improve oral health status by inducing lifelong oral health promotive habits and contribute to a reduction of social inequalities in oral health. The solutions will be both population-wide and adaptable to individual needs to reach both vulnerable and non-vulnerable adolescents. #Care4YoungTeeth<3 will establish an innovative collaboration between adolescents, PDS, industry and research partners nationally and internationally to develop new knowledge of relevant solutions that support young people on their premises drawing on their peer cultures. Our project will engage stakeholders to co-create oral health products, digital information and communication tools and service touchpoints, implement them within a clinical context, conduct summative evaluations, develop recommendations and develop an implementation plan.

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BEHANDLING-God og treffsikker diagnostikk, behandling og rehabilitering