5.1 The demography of oral diseases, future challenges and the implications for dental education

Pamela Zarkowski*, Monika Gyenes, Keith Last, Peter Leous, John Clarkson, Jacinta McLoughlin, Heikki Murtomaa, John Gibson, T. Gugushe, Burton Edelstein, Robin Matthews, Marjoke Vervoorn, J. L.M. van den Heuvel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


This Section considered the immense challenges presented by the changingdemographyofpopulations(inparticular,cross-boundary flow),changingoralanddentaldiseasetrends.Italsoconsideredthe difficultiesofgatheringdataon such information. It then considered howthesechallengesmayaffect theeducationof the dental teamin thefuture.TheSectionconsideredtheconceptof the'global village' as a representation of the changingworlddemography.Wewere at pains to recognize that our role was in considering both emerging and established market economies. In fact, a major part of the Section's activitiesconcentratedonthedevelopment of theprofessional ethic of social responsibility - represented at the local, regional, national and international levels. We considered a finite groupoforalanddental diseases,namelydental caries,periodontal diseases, oral cancer and cranio-facial disorders. In addition, we chose to comment on systemic diseases influenced by oral diseases, oraldiseasesinfluencedbysystemicdiseasesandiatrogenic diseases (including prion disorders and cross-infection control issues). The Section recognized the profound difference between needs and demands in the provision of oral and dental health care. We considered the concept of best practices within our working remit and named these as: the gathering of valid data on health trends; uniformity in the measurement of disease and diagnostic parameters; the identification of a core curriculum which best addresses an increased awareness of changing demography; and a multidisciplinary approach to education and research in the context of global collaboration. The Section recognized the enormous potential for global networking with the explosion of information and communication technology. We investigated the requirements in converging towards higher global standards, while accepting and appreciating important regional and continental differences. To this end, the Section has put forward a number of important recommendations and realistic goals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-166
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Dental Education
Issue numberSUPP.3
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Demography
  • Disease and diagnostic parameters
  • Global village
  • Oral health


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