Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Dentistry


Pediatric Dentistry

First Advisor

Julie Coe

Second Advisor

Tegwyn Brickhouse

Third Advisor

Al Best


To examine the pediatric dentists’ perspective on level of care to children 0-3 years old by general dentists, an electronic survey was sent out to 5185 AAPD members and 769 responded (response rate: 14.8%). Forty-six percent agreed with a general dentist providing a dental home to children 0-3 years old. Only 24% agreed that general dentists could perform complex restorative and behavior management procedures for 0-3 years old. Younger respondents, pediatric dentists who practice in rural areas or teaching pediatric dentistry, and those who perceived adequate exposure during dental school were more likely to agree on general dentists proving a dental home (p values ranged from <0.0001 to 0.022). This study finding can help guide what level of care general dentists may provide and when a referral to a pediatric dentist is recommended and the appropriate competency level of entry-level general dentists to care for 0-3 years old.


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