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Experts mark health literacy month with video

October 03, 2016

By Michelle Manchir

October is Health Literacy Month and a good time for dental professionals to brush up on health literacy basics, such as using plain language and confirming comprehension when talking with patients.

The ADA House of Delegates adopted in 2006 policy defining health literacy as the degree to which individuals have the capacity to obtain, process and understand basic health information and services need to make appropriate oral health decisions (Resolution 13H: 2006).

Earlier this year, the ADA created a webpage dedicated to health literacy in dentistry. It offers links to online resources related to provider-patient communications; best practices for using, learning and teaching nonscientific language; and other related articles and links, including some targeted for the patient.

In September, the ADA National Advisory Committee on Health Literacy in Dentistry convened at ADA Headquarters. Some of its members shared their insights on health literacy and what it means for dental professionals with ADA News. Highlights of their interviews are featured in an ADA News video.

For more information about health literacy, contact Sharee Clough, manager of preventive health activities for the ADA Council on Access, Prevention and Interprofessional Relations, by email at

To watch the ADA News video online, visit YouTube.