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“Oral health is a global public good and a basic human right” ~ Dr. Anvar Velji


CUGH's first interest group was its global oral health interest group (GOHIG). Oral health is a neglected global health challenge. We are committed to improving access to dental care and prevention, particularly in low income communities through building capacity, education, and research. If you are a dentist or other public health professional please join this group and identify ways we can strengthen access to quality oral health for all.

What are social determinants of health (SDH)?

Oral health can be influenced by social factors such as socioeconomic status, place of residence, or education. Global oral health aims to reduce health inequality among different social groups.


Journals can be useful tools for educating people about global oral health and promoting change to improve oral health equality:

The Oral Health Atlas

Baelum V, van Palenstein Helderman W, Hougson A, Yee R, Fejerskov O. The role of dentistry in controlling caries and periodontitis globally. In: Fejerskov O, Kidd EAM, editors. Dental caries: the disease and its clinical management. Oxford: Blackwell Munksgaard; 2008. p. 581.

Fejerskov O, Nyvad B, Kidd E, editors. Caries prevention and control in low- and middle-income countries. Wiley-Blackwell; 2015:405.

American Dental Association. ADA House Resolution 31H-2010 for international dental volunteer programs.

FDI World Dental Federation. The challenge of oral diseases - a call for global action. Oral Health Atlas 2nd edition (eds Benzian, H & Williams, D). Geneva & Brighton: FDI & Myriad Edition; 2015

Guidelines for dental volunteers: FDI policy statement. Montreal: FDI World Dental Federation, 2005.

Australian Dental Association. Handbook for dental volunteer projects.


Assessing the Contribution of the Dental Care System to Oral Health Care Disparities 

A competency matrix for global oral health

Global Reference List of 100 Core Health Indicators, 2015

Strengthening of Oral Health Systems: Oral Health through Primary Health Care 

Marcenes W, Kassebaum NJ, Bernabe E et al. Global Burden of Oral Conditions in 1990-2010: A Systematic Analysis. J Dent Res. 2013;92(7):592-597.

Murray CJ, Vos T, Lozano R et al. Disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) for 291 diseases and injuries in 21 regions, 1990-2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010. Lancet. 2012;380(9859):2197-2223.

Benzian H, Bergman M, Cohen L, Hobdell M, Mackay J. The UN High-level meeting on prevention and control of non-communicable diseases and its significance for oral health worldwide. J Pub Health Dent. 2012;72:91-93

Donoff B, McDonough J, Riedy C. Integrating oral and general health care. N Engl J Med. 2014;371(24):2247-2249.

Varenne B. Integrating Oral Health with Non-Communicable Diseases as an Essential Component of General Health: WHO’s Strategic Orientation for the African Region. J Dent Educ. 2015;79(5 Suppl):S32-7.

Benzian H, Hobdell M, Holmgren C et al. Political priority of global oral health: an analysis of reasons for international neglect. Int Dent J. 2011;61(3):124-130.

Benzian H, Cohen L, Wong TC. Global supply of health professionals. N Engl J Med. 2014;370(23):2246-2247.

Glick M, Monteiro da Silva O, Seeberger GK et al. FDI Vision 2020: shaping the future of oral health. Int Dent J. 2012;62(6):278-291.

Yamalik N, Ensaldo-Carrasco E, Bourgeois D. Oral health workforce planning. Part 1: Data available in a sample of FDI member countries. Int Dent J. 2013;63(6):298-305

Mathur M, Williams DM, Reddy KS, Watt R. Universal health coverage: A unique policy opportunity for oral health. J Dent Res. 2015;94(3):3S-5S.

Frencken JE, Holmgren C, van Palenstein Helderman W. Basic Package of Oral Care (BPOC). Nijmengen, Netherlands: WHO Collaborationg Centre for Oral Health Care Planning and Future Scenarios, University of Nijmengen; 2002

Masood M, Sheiham A, Bernabe E. Household expenditure for dental care in low and middle income countries. PLoS One. 2015;10(4):e0123075.

Yee R, Sheiham A. The burden of restorative dental treatment for children in Third World countries. International Dental Journal. 2002;52:1-9.

Seymour B, Barrow J, Kalenderian E. Results from a new Global Oral Health course-a case study. J. Dent. Educ. 2013 Oct;77(10):1245-51. 

Seymour B, Benzian H, Kalenderian E. Voluntourism and global health-an evolving dental curriculum to prepare students. J Dent Educ. 2013 Oct;77(10):1252-57.

Greenspan J. Global health and dental education: a tipping point? J. Dent. Educ. 2013Oct;77(10):1243-4.)

Cohen LK, Valachovic RW. Students passionate for global health: dental schools beginning to respond. Compend Contin Educ Dent 2012;33(7):470-1.

Hardwick KS. Volunteering for the long-term good. Compend Contin Educ Dent 2009;30(3):126-8.

Holmgren C, Benzian H. Dental volunteering: a time for reflection and a time for change. Br Dent J 2011;210(11):512-6

Karim A, Mascarenhas AK, Dharamsi S. A global oral health course: isn’t it time? J Dent Educ 2008;72(12): 1238-46.<

Parkash H, Mathur VP, Duggal R, Jhuraney B. Den­tal workforce issues: a global concern. J Dent Educ 2006;70(11 Suppl):22-6.

WHO September 2005 oral health bulletins

Global Oral Health institutions and organizations:

Get Involved & Upcoming Events

Useful Links:

Dental and Orthodontic Terms: