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Oral health program benefits immigrants
Updated: 8/27/2008 12:00:34 PM

Newly arrived immigrants in the U.S. are among those who are most responsive to oral health initiatives, according to the findings of a new study.

Researchers at Simmons College, City University of New York and Boston University studied the effects of a dental health outreach program among disadvantaged communities, focusing particularly on large urban areas with a significant Hispanic population.

They found that families who have lived in the country for a longer period of time did not respond as well to the campaign as those who had arrived more recently.

According to the authors, among this group the oral health initiative resulted in "more favorable beliefs" about the benefits of good dental care, such as a reduction in gum disease and cavities, increased self-confidence and social acceptance.

In addition, these participants were found to engage in more beneficial behaviors such as brushing, flossing and dental checkups.

A previous New York University study of immigrant dental health found that people's country of origin was linked to the level of tooth decay they exhibited.

© 2008 Brafton Inc.


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