Patients Welcome Nutritional Counseling in Dental Clinics

A recent study published in the journal BDJ Open has revealed that patients have a positive attitude towards receiving nutritional counseling within dental settings. The study, conducted across three different dental clinics in Italy, aimed to investigate patients’ perspectives on this transdisciplinary approach.The findings highlight that most dental patients acknowledge the benefits of receiving nutritional advice from both dentists and nutritionists. Patients perceive nutritionists within dental settings as valuable resources, providing useful guidance to prevent oral and systemic diseases. They appreciate the opportunity to receive personalized dietary plans and periodic follow-ups.

Oral Health and Overall Well-being

The study emphasizes the close relationship between oral health and overall health, with both sharing modifiable risk factors such as diet. Dental diseases like caries and tooth erosion are significantly influenced by dietary habits, including excessive sugar intake and consumption of acidic foods and beverages.Furthermore, the study highlights the role of macronutrient and micronutrient intake in the risk of periodontal diseases. Recommendations for oral health practitioners include advising patients on the intake of fish oils, fiber, fruits, and vegetables, while limiting refined sugars for both periodontal and systemic health preservation.

Transdisciplinary Approach for Optimal Health

The World Health Organization (WHO) has promoted the ‘One Health’ approach, where a transdisciplinary way of working is crucial for achieving optimal health outcomes. The dental setting presents a powerful opportunity for nutritional counseling, as patients periodically visit for oral health care.The American Dental Association (ADA) encourages collaborations among dentists, dieticians, and other nutrition experts to raise interdisciplinary awareness about the relationship between diet, nutrition, and oral health.

Conclusion

The study’s findings support the positive attitude of patients towards receiving nutritional counseling within dental settings. Dental clinics can play a pivotal role in oral and systemic disease screening and prevention, and a multidisciplinary approach is highly encouraged. By embracing this transdisciplinary approach, dental professionals can contribute to promoting overall well-being and preventing dietary-related diseases.