Bridging a gap: the (lack of a) sociology of oral health and healthcare

Exley, Catherine (2009) Bridging a gap: the (lack of a) sociology of oral health and healthcare. Sociology of Health & Illness, 31 (7). pp. 1093-1108. ISSN 0141-9889

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This article provides an historical review of international research related to sociology and oral health and healthcare. I begin by considering the relevance of the mouth and oral health to social interactions and physical health, and outline existing inequalities in oral health and healthcare experiences. The paper examines critically some of the existing published research in the field – considering both what might be described as sociology of oral health and healthcare and sociology in oral healthcare – and demonstrates the dearth of sociological research related to this subject compared to other areas of interest within the field of sociology of health and illness. I conclude by suggesting some ways in which this area could be expanded and developed further. I suggest that sociological analyses of how individuals experience, understand and manage their mouth and oral health, can add to and enhance the broader field of the sociology of health and illness. Further, examining experiences and provision of oral healthcare may provide sociology with a new opportunity to explore the neglected field of private healthcare, but also to engage with health policy makers who seek to address oral healthcare needs.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: oral health, teeth, mouth, dentistry
Subjects: A400 Clinical Dentistry
B900 Others in Subjects allied to Medicine
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Nursing, Midwifery and Health
Depositing User: Paul Burns
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2017 15:30
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2019 15:26

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