Article: Volume 46 Number 7 Page 686 - July/August 2019

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  Dent Update 2019; 46: 686-692

General Practice:  Motivational Interviewing in Managing Dental Caries in Children

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Abstract: Motivational Interviewing (MI) is a person-centred behavioural management technique that is valuable in prevention in healthcare including dentistry. This useful tool increases the motivation of patients and their carers and has been incorporated in the professional guidelines for the prevention of dental disease and also behavioural management. This review explores the relevance to the whole dental team in the promotion of oral health behaviour and discusses the relevant evidence related to dentistry.

Clinical relevance: All dental professionals who deliver prevention should understand the clinical relevance of using MI so that dental disease can be minimized with positive behaviour change in patients and their care-givers.

Author notes: Nabina Bhujel, BDS(Aus), MPaedDent RCPS(Glasg), DClinDent(Leeds), FDS RCS(Eng) (email:, Consultant in Paediatric Dentistry, Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Trust and Sadna Rajan, BDS(Mal), MDSc(Mal), MDentSci(Leeds), MPaedDent RCS(Eng), Lecturer in Paediatric Dentistry, Melbourne Dental School, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.

Objective: To understand the clinical implications of MI within dentistry.