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Type: Journal article
Title: How readable are Australian paediatric oral health education materials?
Author: Arora, A.
Lam, A.
Karami, Z.
Do, L.
Harris, M.
Citation: BMC Oral Health, 2014; 14(1):111-1-111-8
Publisher: BioMed Central
Issue Date: 2014
ISSN: 1472-6831
Statement of
Amit Arora, Andy SF Lam, Zahra Karami, Loc Giang Do and Mark Fort Harris
Abstract: BACKGROUND: The objective of this study was to analyse the readability of paediatric oral health education leaflets available in Australia. METHODS: Forty paediatric oral health education materials were analysed for general readability according to the following parameters: Thoroughness; Textual framework; Terminology; and Readability (Flesch-Kincaid grade level (FKGL), Gunning Fog index (Fog) and Simplified Measure of Gobbledygook (SMOG)). RESULTS: Leaflets produced by the industry were among the hardest to read with an average readability at the 8th grade (8.4 ± 0.1). The readability of leaflets produced by the commercial sector was at the 7th grade (7.1 ± 1.7) and the government at the 6th grade (6.3 ± 1.9). The FKGL consistently yielded readabilities 2 grades below the Fog and SMOG indexes. In the content analyses, 14 essential paediatric oral health topics were noted and Early Childhood Caries (ECC) was identified as the most commonly used jargon term. CONCLUSION: Paediatric oral health education materials are readily available, yet their quality and readability vary widely and may be difficult to read for disadvantaged populations in Australia. A redesign of these leaflets while taking literacy into consideration is suggested.
Keywords: Humans
Periodontal Diseases
Dental Caries
Tooth Injuries
Cariostatic Agents
Pit and Fissure Sealants
Dental Care
Dental Devices, Home Care
Health Education, Dental
Tooth Eruption
Teaching Materials
Child, Preschool
Oral Health
Educational Status
Terminology as Topic
Health Literacy
Rights: (c) 2014 Arora et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
DOI: 10.1186/1472-6831-14-111
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Dentistry publications

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