I am a Professor of Psychology and Chartered Health Psychologist and Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society. I lead the Person-centred and Population Oral Health Research Group (PAPOR), which adopts a unique interdisciplinary approach to studying oral health that integrates social and behavioural sciences with clinical specialities.
My research interests centre on the application of psychological theories, methods and techniques to address key questions in oral health and the field of dentistry. I am currently involved in a number of national and international collaborative projects in two principle programmes of work:
- The psychological, social and cultural factors which influence how people cope with chronic oral health conditions and their treatment. Such conditions include cleft lip and palate, head and neck cancer, orthognathic conditions, xerostomia, periodontal disease and edentulousness. This programme of work investigates the psychosocial factors which influence individual’s experiences of their oral health and the impact on well-being and quality of life. Understanding the role of such factors – sense of coherence, self esteem, social support networks, coping strategies, stress and resilience – allows us to explore potential mechanisms by which oral health impacts on individual’s daily lives and, in turn, develop intervention strategies that have the potential to improve health and well-being.
- The development and evaluation of person-reported outcome measures (PROMs) in dentistry. The inclusion of PROMs in research and clinical practice is relatively recent in dentistry, and marks a shift to a more biopsychosocial, person-centred approach. I have been involved in developing, alongside colleagues at Sheffield, a number of condition-specific oral health quality of life (OHRQoL) for dentine hypersensitivity (DHEQ), malocclusion (MIQ), and dry mouth (DMI). This programme of work also involves a critical examination of the conceptual foundations of OHRQoL concepts, together with the application of innovative methodological and statistical approaches within the OHRQoL field including structural equation modelling, agent based modelling, and microsimulation.
- President (2013-2014), Past President (2014-2016), Program Chair (2011-12), Symposium Organiser (2010-2011, 2017-2018) and Executive committee member (2010-present), Behavioural, Epidemiologic and Health Services Research Group (BEHSR), International Association for Dental Research (IADR)
- Associate Editor and Editorial Board, Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology (2010-present)
- Section Editor and Editorial Board, Behavioural Sciences, Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal (2009-2015)
- Grant reviewer, NIHR, Research for Patient Benefit and Programme Grants; MRC, Life-long health and well-being; ESRC, Small Grant Scheme applications; Cancer Research UK; Health Research Board of Ireland - Collaborative Applied Research Grants in Population Health and Health Services Research
- External examiner, Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Bachelor of Dental Surgery, Part 2 Communication Skills, Human Science and Law and Ethics (2010-2014)
- Journal referee for Quality of Life Research, British Journal of Health Psychology, Social Science and Medicine, Journal of Dental Research, Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, Cleft Palate Craniofacial Journal, Journal of Psychophysiology, Personality and Individual Differences, Journal of Psychosomatic Research, Community Dental Health, International Journal of Paediatric Dentistry, British Dental Journal, Journal of Orthodontics, European Journal of Oral Sciences
Invited international and national lectures and keynotes (2011-2016)
- ‘Children and families: Promoting adjustment to oral health conditions’ in ‘From Macro to Micro Perspectives: Creating meaning in dentistry’ Colgate Symposium held at the European Academy of Paediatric Dentistry, Belgrade, June 2016 ‘The psychosocial impact of dentine hypersensitivity’ in ‘Is Dentine Hypersensitivity a Dental Public Health Problem?’ symposium to be held at the Pan European Federation of IADR Conference, Croatia, September 2014
- ‘Using social science theory in oral and dental research: Why and how?’ Lunch and Learning Event. IADR Conference, Cape Town, June 2014
- 'Using theory to link clinical interventions to psychosocial outcomes in oral health research' in ‘Clinical Trials and Methodology Development for Patient-Oriented Outcomes’ symposium, IADR Conference, Cape Town, June 2014
- ‘Theory based interventions in oral health’ symposium at the IADR conference, Brazil, June 2012
- ‘How can behavioural sciences contribute to improving population oral health?’ European Association of Dental Public Health Conference, Gothenberg, June 2014
- ‘What psychosocial factors influence children’s oral health?’ Sir John Walsh Research Institute, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Otago, November 2013
- ‘The development and evaluation of person-reported outcome measures in dentistry’. Workshop Sir John Walsh Research Institute, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Otago, November 2013
- ‘There is nothing as practical as a good theory’. World Universities Network 3rd symposium, University of Western Australia, Perth, November 2013
- 'Exploring factors affecting quality of life in children and young people’ symposium at the British Society for Oral and Dental Research, Sheffield, September 2011
- Psychological adjustment to chronic oral health conditions in children and young people’ seminar as part of the BPS Seminar Series on Psychology and Dentistry: Future Directions, Sheffield, July 2011
- ‘Contribution of Social and Behavioural Science to improving population oral health’. British Society of Community Dentistry Conference, London, November 2011
Each year the Behavioural, Epidemiologic and Health Services Research Group of the IADR announces the Giddon Award for Distinguished Research in the Behavioural Sciences which recognises a single basic or applied research paper within social or cultural anthropology, education, psychology, psychiatry, sociology or social work as applied to dentistry.
- 2013 Giddon Award for Distinguished Research in Behavioural Sciences for the paper: Nammontri O, Robinson PG, Baker SR. Enhancing Oral Health via Sense of Coherence: A Cluster randomized Trial. Journal of Dental Research 2013; 92: 26-31
- 2016 Giddon Award for Distinguished Research in Behavioural Sciences for the paper:
- Baker SR, Gibson BJ. (2014). Social Oral Epidemi(olog)2y -Where next: one small step or one giant leap? Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology 2014; 42: 481-494.