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Open AccessReview

The Importance of Oral Health in Immigrant and Refugee Children

Department of Pediatrics, Hennepin County Medical Center, Minneapolis, MN 55415, USA
Children 2019, 6(9), 102;
Received: 26 June 2019 / Revised: 29 August 2019 / Accepted: 3 September 2019 / Published: 9 September 2019
According to the Migration Policy Institute, 2017 data revealed that a historic high 44.5 million people living in the United States (US) were foreign-born [1], more than double the number from 1990 [2]. Since the creation of the Refugee Resettlement Program in 1980, refugee families have settled in the US more than in any other country in the world [3]. In 2018, for the first time, Canada overtook the US in numbers of refugees accepted [1]. Foreign-born people now account for 13.7% of the total US population [1]. Further, a quarter of children in the United States currently live in households with at least one foreign-born parent [4]. These population shifts are important to note because immigrant and refugee families bring cultural influences and health experiences from their home countries which can greatly affect the overall health and well-being of children. For these new arrivals, oral health is often a significant health issue. The severity of dental disease varies with country of origin as well as cultural beliefs that can hinder access to care even once it is available to them [5,6]. As pediatricians and primary care providers, we should acknowledge that oral health is important and impacts overall health. Healthcare providers should be able to recognize oral health problems, make appropriate referrals, and effectively communicate with families to address knowledge gaps in high-risk communities. View Full-Text
Keywords: oral health; immigrant and refugee children; culturally responsive care; acculturation oral health; immigrant and refugee children; culturally responsive care; acculturation
MDPI and ACS Style

Crespo, E. The Importance of Oral Health in Immigrant and Refugee Children. Children 2019, 6, 102.

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