Depression: Special Considerations for the Dental Setting

Publication ID Published Volume
9010 September 28, 2011 7

Abstract

The specific aim of this presentation is to increase awareness of depressive symptoms, impacts on oral health, treatments for depression and how to make appropriate referrals. This presentation and associated discussion guide will also encourage dental professionals to explore their own beliefs about depression in order to facilitate communication with patients and promote patient health. The resource contains a PowerPoint presentation with a script, a discussion guide, resource list, and instructor's guide. The material can be presented in a face to face class, or in an online or partially online course.

The one-year prevalence rate for depression is 9.5%, or approximately 20.9 million adults in America. The lifetime prevalence of Major Depressive Disorder is approximately 10-25% (1996, American Psychiatric Association DSM-IV). It is highly likely that dental students and practicing dentists will encounter patients with depression. Depression and the psychopharmacological treatment of depression have significant oral health impacts. The practicing dentist should be aware of the special needs of these patients in order to properly plan and execute treatment. Depression is frequently left untreated or poorly treated. If untreated, depression can lead to significant functional impairments in the patient’s life or even premature death. Dentists are in a unique position to recognize signs of depression as they develop and to make appropriate mental health referrals.

The specific aim of this presentation is to increase awareness of depressive symptoms, how depression impacts oral health, treatments for depression and how to make appropriate referrals. This presentation and associated discussion guide will also encourage dental professionals to explore their own stigmatizing beliefs about depression in order to facilitate communication with patients and promote patient health.

Citation

Hinz J. Depression: special considerations for the dental setting. MedEdPORTAL Publications. 2011;7:9010. http://dx.doi.org/10.15766/mep_2374-8265.9010

Educational Objectives

  1. To recognize symptoms of depression.
  2. To recognize oral health effects of depression.
  3. To recommend treatment and education to meet the special needs of the patient with depression.
  4. To communicate appropriately with patients with depression.
  5. To make appropriate referrals to mental health professionals.

Keywords

  • Depression, Major Depressive Disorder

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ISSN 2374-8265