Adult orthodontics: internet information and a national survey

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2015
Authors
McMorrow, Siobhán
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University College Cork
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Aims: 1. To investigate the reliability and readability of information on the Internet on adult orthodontics. 2. To evaluate the profile and treatment of adults by specialist orthodontists in the Republic of Ireland (ROI). Materials and methods: 1. An Internet search was conducted in May 2015 using three search engines (Google, Yahoo and Bing), with two search terms (“adult orthodontics” and “adult braces”). The first 50 websites from each engine were screened and exclusion criteria applied. Included websites were then assessed for reliability using the JAMA benchmarks, the DISCERN and LIDA tools and the presence of the HON seal. Readability was assessed using the FRES. 2. A pilot-tested questionnaire about adult orthodontics was distributed to 122 eligible specialist orthodontists in the ROI. Questions addressed general and treatment information about adult orthodontic patients, methods of information provision and respondent demographics. Results: 1. Thirteen websites met the inclusion criteria. Three websites contained all JAMA benchmarks and one displayed the HON Seal. The mean overall score for DISCERN was 3.9/5 and the mean total LIDA score was 115/120. The average FRES score was 63.1. 2. The questionnaire yielded a response rate of 83%. The typical demographic profile of adult orthodontic patients was professional females between 25-35 years. The most common incisor relationship and skeletal base was Class II, division 1 (51%) and Class II (61%) respectively. Aesthetic upper brackets and metal lower brackets were the most frequently used appliances. Only 30% of orthodontists advise their adult patients to find extra information on the Internet. Conclusions: 1. The reliability and readability of information on the Internet on adult orthodontics is of moderate quality. 2. The provision of adult orthodontic treatment is common among specialist orthodontists in the Republic of Ireland.
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Adult orthodontics
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McMorrow, S. 2015. Adult orthodontics: internet information and a national survey. PhD Thesis, University College Cork.