Journal article

Hard to reach communities or hard to access services? Migrant mothers' experiences of dental services

E Riggs, M Gussy, L Gibbs, C van Gemert, E Waters, N Kilpatrick



BACKGROUND: Good oral health is an important component of overall health which can help migrants settle in a new country. Infant oral health is intimately associated with maternal oral health knowledge and behaviours and therefore, encounters with dental services. This study aimed to explore the experiences of dental service use from the perspective of migrant mothers living in Melbourne, Australia. METHODS: A participatory research approach utilizing qualitative methods was adopted. Women from Iraq, Lebanon and Pakistan participated. Semi-structured focus groups and interviews were conducted and thematic analysis of the data was completed. RESULTS: Focus groups (n = 11) and interviews (n = ..

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Funding Acknowledgements

We are thankful to all of the women for sharing their 'Teeth Tales' - stories about teeth, with us. We are grateful to our community partners in particular Amal El-Khoury (Arabic Welfare), Leila Alloush, Ninawa Younan (Victorian Arabic Social Services), Saiqa Perveen, Saher Ali (Pakistani community researchers) and the Pakistan Australia Association Melbourne for their support and guidance throughout this research. This research was funded by the Telstra Foundation Community Development Fund. Elisha Riggs was supported by an NHMRC postgraduate scholarship to complete this research. Elisha Riggs, Elizabeth Waters and Lisa Gibbs also acknowledge support from the Jack Brockhoff Foundation. At the time of the study Caroline van Gemert was located at Merri Community Health Service. Elisha Riggs was supported by the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute at the time of preparing this manuscript which is supported by the Victorian Government's Operational Infrastructure Support Program.