INTERVAL Dental Recalls Trial

Traditionally dentists encourage the practice of recommending 6 monthly dental check-ups. There is, however, little information to either support or refute this practice, or to advise either patients or dentists of the best dental recall interval for the maintenance of oral health.

The purpose of this study is to investigate and compare the effect of three different arrangements for the timing of dental check-up recall intervals on oral health. The first is a fixed, 6 month recall interval. The second is an individualised, recall interval based on the patient's risk of dental disease. The third is a fixed, 24 month recall interval.

The results of this study will provide much needed evidence on the best time interval between dental check-ups in order to improve and maintain oral health. Because we do not know which check-up interval is the most effective for maintaining oral health, we need to make comparisons. People will be put into groups and then compared. The groups are selected by a computer which has no information about the individual (i.e. by chance). Patients in each group then have different check-up intervals and these are compared.

The study is being organised by staff at the INTERVAL Dental Recalls Trial Study Office at the Dental Health Services & Research Unit, University of Dundee. Research groups from NHS Education for Scotland, the Universities of Edinburgh, Glasgow, Manchester and St. Andrews, and the Health Services Research Unit, University of Aberdeen are also involved. The study will be carried out in 44 dental practices across the UK.

The study is funded by the Health Technology Assessment programme of the NHS (

If you have any questions or would like any more information, please contact the INTERVAL Trial Office, Dental Health Services Research Unit, University of Dundee, Level 9, Dundee Dental Hospital and School, Park Place, Dundee, DD1 4HN. Telephone 01382 383817, email or visit the INTERVAL web page on the University of Dundee website.


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Dental Health Services Research Unit, University of Dundee

Health Services Research Unit, University of Aberdeen
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