AIM: To assess the feasibility and acceptability of screening for alcohol misuse and delivering brief advice to eligible patients attending NHS dental practices in London.

METHODS: A two-arm cluster randomized controlled feasibility trial was conducted. Twelve dental practices were recruited and randomized to intervention and control arms. Participants attending for a dental check were recruited into the study and were eligible if they consumed alcohol above recommended levels assessed by the AUDIT-C screening tool. All eligible participants were asked to complete a baseline socio-demographic questionnaire. Six months after the completion of baseline measures, participants were contacted via telephone by a researcher masked to their allocation status. The full AUDIT tool was then administered. Alcohol consumption in the last 90 days was also assessed using the Form 90. A process evaluation assessed the acceptability of the intervention.

RESULTS: Over a 7-month period, 229 participants were recruited (95.4% recruitment rate) and at the 6 months follow-up, 176 participants were assessed (76.9% retention rate). At the follow-up, participants in the intervention arm were significantly more likely to report a longer abstinence period (3.2 vs. 2.3 weeks respectively, P = 0.04) and non-significant differences in AUDIT (44.9% vs. 59.8% AUDIT positive respectively, P = 0.053) and AUDIT C difference between baseline and follow-up (-0.67 units vs. -0.29 units respectively, P = 0.058). Results from the process evaluation indicated that the intervention and study procedures were acceptable to dentists and patients.

CONCLUSIONS: This study has demonstrated the feasibility and acceptability of dentists screening for alcohol misuse and providing brief advice.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberagz017
Pages (from-to)235-242
Number of pages8
JournalAlcohol and alcoholism (Oxford, Oxfordshire)
Issue number3
Early online date18 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2019


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