Abstract: Objective: One issue that receives a great deal of attention is the comparison between measurement of children’s oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) reports with those of their parents. However, the extent to which parents understand the effects of ill-health on their children’s lives remains unanswered. The purpose of this systematic review was to identify the literature on the nature, extent and the pattern of agreement/disagreement between parent and child reports about child OHRQoL and assess the association between them.
Materials and methods: The literature was searched using MEDLINE, ISI, Lilacs and Scielo, from January 1985 to March 2007. The selected studies used well-validated instruments and provided children’s and parent’s perceptions of child OHRQoL.
Results: A total of 87 articles were retrieved and five were selected for the review, which showed that children and parents do not necessarily share similar views about child OHRQoL. Some parents may have limited knowledge about their children’s OHRQoL, particularly the impact on social and emotional well-being.
Conclusions: Valid and reliable information can be obtained from parents and children using appropriate questionnaire techniques. Although the parents’ reports may be incomplete due to lack of knowledge about certain experiences, they still provide useful information.