Study protocol of a randomized controlled trial to test the effect of a smartphone application on oral-health behavior and oral hygiene in adolescents with fixed orthodontic appliances

Janneke Scheerman, Berno van Meijel, P. van Empelen, G.J.C. Kramer, G.H. Verrips, A.H Pakpour, T.C.T van den Braak en Cor van Loveren
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In BMC Oral Health verscheen het volgende artikel van Inholland-docente en promovenda Janneke Scheerman (en collega’s). Background: Adolescents with fixed orthodontic appliances are at high risk of developing dental caries. To date, new smartphone technologies have seldom been used to support them in the preventive behavior that can help prevent dental caries. After an intervention-mapping process, we developed a smartphone application (the WhiteTeeth app) for preventing dental caries through improved oral-health behavior and oral hygiene. The app, which is intended to be used at home, will help adolescents with fixed orthodontic appliances perform their oral self-care behavior. The app is based on the Health Action Process Approach (HAPA) theory, and incorporates several behavior-change techniques that target the psychosocial factors of oral-health behavior. This article describes the protocol of a randomized controlled trial (RCT) to evaluate the effects of the WhiteTeeth app on oral-health behavior and oral-hygiene outcomes (presence of dental plaque and gingival bleeding) compared with those of care as usual, in patients aged 12–16 with fixed orthodontic appliances.