Honorary Senior Lecturer, Consultant in Dental Public Health; Director, Centre for Evidence-based Dentistry, DHSRU


Dundee Dental School
University of Dundee
Park Place


GDC No. 51315

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Derek qualified from Cardiff Dental School in 1977 and came to dental public health dentistry after working in hospital, general and community dental practice. While undertaking his dental public health training in the Anglia and Oxford Region he developed an interest in the evidence-based health care and helped to established the Centre for Evidence-based Dentistry. The Centre was established in 1995 and he was also instrumental in founding the Evidence-based Dentistry Journal, which he currently edits. Derek is a specialist advisor to the Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme and led the development of the Scotishdental.org website and has recently completed the development of on online training programme for the National Dental Epidemiology programme (www.ndip.scottishdental.org)

He was involved in the York Review of water fluoridation and the NICE dental recall guideline and chaired a selective update of the SIGN guideline on the prevention of caries in children which was published in March 2014. He has been involved with teaching evidence-based dentistry and a wide range of evidence-based initiatives both nationally and internationally since 1995. He is also a co-author of the book Evidence-Based Dentistry: Managing Information for Better Practice (Quintessential of Dental Practice).

Peer Reviewed Publications 2011-2013




Nanjappa S, Chambers S, Marcenes W, Richards D, Freeman R. A theory led narrative review of one-to-one health interventions: the influence of attachment  style and client-provider relationship on client adherence. Health Educ Res. 2014 Oct;29(5):740-54. doi: 10.1093/her/cyu029. Epub 2014 Jun 3. PubMed PMID: 24895356.


Duane BG, Richards D, Young L, Archibald B. Trends and costs of high concentration fluoride toothpaste prescribing in Scotland. Br Dent J. 2014 May;216(10):589-91. doi: 10.1038/sj.bdj.2014.397. PubMed PMID: 24852995.


Elkhadem A, Mickan S, Richards D. Adverse events of surgical extrusion in treatment for crown-root and cervical root fractures: a systematic review of case series/reports. Dent Traumatol. 2014 Feb;30(1):1-14. doi: 10.1111/edt.12051. Epub 2013 Jun 25. PubMed PMID: 23796195.


Sheela Tripathee S, Akbar T, Richards D, Freeman R. Sugar-containing methadone to cause dental caries: a systematic review. Health Education Journal 2013; 72: p 469-485

Elkhadem A, Mickan S, Richards D. Adverse events of surgical extrusion in treatment for crown-root and cervical root fractures: a systematic review of case series/reports. Dent Traumatol. 2013 Jun 25. doi: 10.1111/edt.12051. [Epub ahead  of print]

Freeman R, Lush C, MacGillveray S, Themessl-Huber M, Richards D. Dental therapists/hygienists working in remote-rural primary care: a structured review of effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability, acceptability and affordability. Int Dent J. 2013 Apr;63(2):103-12

Hayden C, Bowler JO, Chambers S, Freeman R, Humphris G, Richards D, Cecil JE. Obesity and dental caries in children: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol. 2013 Aug;41(4):289-308


Niederman R, Richards D. What is evidence-based dentistry, and do oral infections increase systemic morbidity or mortality? Oral Maxillofac Surg ClinNorth Am. 2011 Nov;23(4):491-6, 

Smith PA,Themessl-Huber  M, Akbar T, Richards D ,  Freeman R. What motivates dentists to work in prisons? A qualitative exploration. Br Dent J. 2011 Aug 26;211(4):E7.

Coles E, Chan K, Collins J, Humphris GM, Richards D, Williams B, Freeman R. Decayed and missing teeth and oral-health related factors: Predicting depression in homeless people. J Psychosomatic Research 2011 Aug;71(2):108-12.

Evidence-based Commentaries  2011-2013


Richards D. Lack of high-quality studies comparing the effectiveness, and cost-effectiveness, of dental auxiliaries and dentists in performing dental care. Evid Based Dent. 2014 Sep;15(3):80. doi: 10.1038/sj.ebd.6401043. PubMed PMID:25343393.

Richards D. Review finds that severe periodontitis affects 11% of the world population. Evid Based Dent. 2014 Sep;15(3):70-1. doi:10.1038/sj.ebd.6401037.PubMed PMID: 25343387.


Richards D. Oral hygiene regimes for mechanically ventilated patients that use chlorhexidine reduce ventilator-associated pneumonia. Evid Based Dent. 2013 Sep;14(3):91-2.

Richards D. Substantial reduction in caries from regular fluoride varnish application. Evid Based Dent. 2013 Sep;14(3)

Richards D. Limited evidence available for the impact of school-based behavioural interventions on oral health. Evid Based Dent. 2013;14(2):42-3.

Richards D. Only limited evidence available for the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of dental auxiliaries. Evid Based Dent. 2013;14(2):38-9.


Richards D. Limited evidence suggests that mouthrinses may be effective in reducing oral malodour. Evid Based Dent. 2012;13(4) 

Richards D. How clean is your toothbrush? Evid Based Dent. 2012;13(4) 

Richards D. Does chlorhexidine prevent dry socket? Evid Based Dent. 2012;13(3):91. 

Richards D. Evidence to support the use of honey for prevention of oral mucositis in cancer patients is limited. Evid Based Dent. 2012;13(3):74 


Richards D. Quality of reporting randomised controlled trials in dental public health. Evid Based Dent. 2011;12(2):54. 

Richards D. Skill-mix and service transfer to primary care settings. Evid Based Dent. 2011;12(2) 

Editorials  2011-2013 


Richards D. COMET watching. Evid Based Dent. 2014 Sep;15(3):66. doi: 10.1038/sj.ebd.6401054. PubMed PMID: 25351535.


Richards D. Prevention, prevention, prevention. Evid Based Dent. 2013 Sep;14(3):66. 

Richards D. Oral diseases affect some 3.9 billion people. Evid Based Dent. 2013;14(2): 

Richards D. Evidence live 2013. Evid Based Dent. 2013;14(2):34.

Richards D. 20 years of the Cochrane Collaboration. Evid Based Dent. 2013 Mar;14(1):2


Richards D. Reviews. Evid Based Dent. 2012;13(4): 

Richards D. DUETs and priority setting. Evid Based Dent. 2012;13(3):92. 

Richards D. Understanding uncertainty. Evid Based Dent. 2012;13(3):68. 

Niederman R, Richards D, Brands W. The changing standard of care. J Am Dent Assoc. 2012 May;143(5):434-7.


Richards D. Time to up the research quality stakes. Evid Based Dent.2011;12(2):34-5.  

Niederman R, Clarkson J, Richards D. The Affordable Care Act and evidence-based care. J Am Dent Assoc. 2011 Apr;142(4):364-7. 

Richards D. Never mind the quality feel the width or less is more? (Editorial). Evid Based  Dent. 2011;12(1):2.

Invited talks 2006-2013 

D. Richards.  The art and science of SIGN writing. British Association for study of Community Dentistry. London 2014

D Richards.  Chewing on the Evidence.   Evidence 2011  - London  2011 

D Richards.  Evidence-based Dentistry .British Society for Restorative Dentistry - Cardiff   2011 

D Richards.  Guidance and Guidelines to promote clinical caries prevention. FDI Annual World Dental Conference. Stockholm. 2009 

D Richards.  Public Health Initiatives to promote clinical caries prevention.  PEF Meeting London. 2009

D Richards.  Evidence-based Dentistry. Lisbon Dental School  2008 

D Richards.  Evidence-based Dentistry. Saudi International Dental Conference. 2007 

D Richards.  Evidence-based Dentistry- Cookbook or New Look. Saudi International Dental Conference. 2006