Research Agenda

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recognizes that high-quality evidence is the foundation of the science and practice of pediatric dentistry. Clinical care should be based on evidence-based dentistry (EBD) principles. Where there is insufficient evidence, relevant research should be conducted to help fill scientific gaps and better inform clinical practice. The AAPD Council on Scientific Affairs is charged with updating and affirming the AAPD Research Agenda.

The AAPD Research Agenda highlights strategic research topics relevant to the practice of pediatric dentistry. To help improve individual patient and population oral health outcomes, we urge academic, state, federal, philanthropic, and corporate funding agencies to devote resources to the following areas:

  • Clinical research: Improving diagnosis, prevention, and management of dental and craniofacial conditions (e.g., emerging dental caries management agents, precision/personalized oral health care, technologies and strategies to monitor and promote health and self-care).
  • Interdisciplinary research: Understanding and eliminating oral health disparities to promote oral health (e.g., basic behavioral and social determinants of health, basic science of craniofacial development, applied microbiology and microbiome research, development of evidence-based public health interventions, clinical trials focusing on children and vulnerable populations, integration of dentistry into the broader health care delivery system, bioinformatics, quality of care, models of interprofessional collaboration, data sharing and training, and team science).
  • Translational research: Moving scientific knowledge into practice and policy (e.g., dissemination and implementation of evidence-based care principles into clinical practice, barriers to dissemination and implementation, policy and practice partnerships).
  • Health and safety research: Increasing our understanding of protection from COVID-19 and other transmittable diseases in the oral care setting (e.g., infection control, personal protective equipment, waterline disinfection, sterilization techniques, interdisciplinary care teams, and telehealth/teledentistry).