Ergonomics in oral health professions: a mapping review protocol

Shiba Roby, Zac Morse


Background: Ergonomics is a multidisciplinary science that studies how humans and other system elements interact and a profession that uses theory, concepts, data, and methodologies to improve human well-being and overall system performance. Oral health professionals need good working ergonomics to preserve their work competence, efficiency, and high clinical level of treatment throughout their careers. For various working practices, clinical procedures, and patient types, they must adjust and ensure proper working postures, adequate illumination, and easy access to essential apparatus and materials. Although some systematic studies and original research have been conducted about different aspects of “ergonomics in oral health professions,” no mapping review has been shown. The authors believe a broad overview of existing literature is required to map existing research, determine research gaps, and guide future research.

Methods: The protocol for this mapping review has been designed by the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analysis extension for scoping studies (PRISMA-SCR) and the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) guidelines. A comprehensive search strategy developed with an experienced liaison librarian for health will be used to search four databases and eight sources of unpublished literature. JBI’s proposed search approach will be used. A PRISMA-SCR flowchart will be used to track the number of recognised, screened, and excluded sources. A data extraction table will be used to collate critical information, supplemented with a narrative explanation, and presented in a tabular style.

Conclusions: This mapping review will identify research gaps in this field and guide further studies.


Dental ergonomics, Dentist, Musculoskeletal disorders, Oral health therapists, Scoping review, Systematic review

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