The Department of Public Health Dentistry adopts a Holistic Approach in rendering services to both the Urban and Rural Population. It strives to enhance the Oral Health of the Community by training the budding Dentists to render Preventive and Treatment Oral Health Care services especially in the rural areas. Since the inception of the Department in 1988, several health programs have been conducted, such as Oral Health and General Health awareness programs, Oral screening and Treatment camps comprising of Diagnosis, Oral Prophylaxis, Restorations, Extractions and Prosthodontic Rehabilitations on a regular basis to facilitate Oral Health Promotion.
The following are the Research thrust areas of the Department
The Department takes pride in managing 17 of the 21 Rural Satellite Dental Centres of Nitte (Deemed to be University) which are located in districts of Dakshina Kannada, Udupi, Chickmagalur and Kodagu. These centres provide a complete spectrum of treatment from Diagnosis to Complete Prosthodontic Rehabilitation with specialty treatment provided at free of cost/ nominal cost.
In addition, the Department organizes and conducts various community oral health programs such as oral screening and dental treatment camps on regular basis in collaboration with NGOs in rural/ semi-urban areas, schools, orphanages, tribal areas and old age homes. As a part of School oral health program, schools are adopted and incremental and comprehensive dental care is provided which includes preventive oral health care services. Oral health care services provided at the dental camps include oral diagnosis, oral health education, tobacco cessation counselling, pit &fissure sealant application, topical fluoride application, oral prophylaxis, extractions and atraumatic restorative treatment. Patients are referred to the Dental College or Rural Health Centres for follow-up or further specialized treatment. The Department also conducts House to House Survey and Assessment of Oral health status of the community. As of October 2022, about 15,01,340 individuals have benefitted from the Oral Health Services provided through the Rural Satellite centres and 4,56,693 have benefitted from the Outreach Programs.
Besides this, the Department also observes days of International or National importance such as World Cancer Day, World Oral Health Day, World Health Day, World No Tobacco Day, National Public Health Dentistry Day, World Environment Day, National Tooth brushing Day, World AIDS day etc. where the faculty and students organize and actively participate in programs to create awareness among the general public regarding maintenance of health and oral health.