The views of examiners on the use of intra-oral photographs to detect dental caries in epidemiological studies

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Aim: The aim of the study was to obtain the views of examiners on their experience of using intra-oral photographs as a means of detecting caries in epidemiological studies compared to an established visual examination method. Method: A focus group discussion was conducted with five examiners experienced in an established visual examination method after they had performed visual dental examinations of a sample of children as well as assessed intra-oral photographs of the same children. Results: The time taken by examiners to assess intraoral photographs becomes extended when compared to performing a visual examination. The ability to assess intra-oral photographs on a screen at a convenient time and place was considered advantageous. The examiners found it easier to make caries detection decisions on intra-oral photographs of primary teeth than permanent teeth. Adequate removal of debris and moisture control prior to obtaining the photographs were considered important. Conclusion: The views of examiners in this study suggest that to improve the utility of photographic method, further research is needed to determine adequate drying methods for use in the field. Consideration should be given to a time-limited, standardised presentation of the photographs including the size and resolution. Specific training on caries detection from photographs is also required. © BASCD 2013.

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34-38
Number of pages4
JournalCommunity Dental Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2013