Before you Start

We want to help you prepare a manuscript that has the best chance of being accepted, which is why we've put together this section with information on how and why to publish with the BDJ, what we look for and important factors to consider before submitting your article.

Choosing the right journal

We don't want you to waste your time by submitting a paper that is inappropriate for the BDJ, so before you do anything consider the questions below:

Does the BDJ reach the appropriate audience for your paper?
Our readership extends to all dentists, dental undergraduates, members of the dental team, hospital, community, academic and general practitioners.

Is your paper within the scope of the BDJ?
The role of the BDJ is to inform its readers of ideas, opinions, developments and key issues in dentistry – clinical, practical and scientific – stimulating interest, debate and discussion. Our main audience is clinicians, so please consider the readers when writing your article.

What is the quality of the other papers published?
We recommend you have a look through past issues of the BDJ to get a feel for the type of papers we publish and the quality we expect. Current and archived content can be found here.

How easy is submission?
We only consider manuscripts that are submitted electronically. Our online submission site will guide you through the process of submission.

How quickly will you receive a decision?
On average, it takes 15 days for submissions to undergo their initial screening, and an average of 66 days from submission to the final decision.

How quickly will your paper be published?
For research and clinical papers, it takes an average of four months from acceptance to publication.

Does the journal offer an open access option?
Yes, we do. Further information on our open access options can be found here.

If you have a research article, why not also consider BDJ Open?
BDJ Open, the BDJ's sister journal, is a peer-reviewed, open-access, online journal, publishing dental and oral health research from all disciplines, publishing original primary research articles, study protocols (including protocol design) and short- and long-term clinical trials (including small studies). Further information on BDJ Open can be found here.

Once you've decided whether the BDJ is suitable for your paper, it's time to take the next step!

Ethics and policies

It's also important that you consider ethics and policies when publishing in the BDJ.

  • Authorship - who qualifies, and in what order should they be listed?
  • Declare any conflict of interests
  • Declare any source of funding
  • Register clinical trials
  • Never submit the same paper twice
  • Obtain permissions if you re-use someone else's and/or previously published figures or tables in your paper
  • Do not plagiarise.

Remember, it is a condition of acceptance of manuscripts that they have not been previously published elsewhere nor are under consideration by any other periodical.


The existence and content of all manuscripts under review is kept confidential within the offices of the BDJ. All referees are requested to respect that confidentiality. Following acceptance all information relating to a paper will be kept confidential within the BDJ offices. Just prior to publication the content of a paper or article may be used for a press release produced by the BDA's Press Office. In such instances it is customary (but not guaranteed) that the author(s) of the paper will be contacted. Authors of papers should not contact the media prior to publication without first contacting the BDA Press Office (telephone 020 7563 4145/46).


Articles involving clinical research should conform to the guidelines issued in the Declaration of Helsinki where applicable, and in general should have ethical committee approval. ARRIVE reporting guidelines must be followed for primary research manuscripts documenting animal studies (PLoS Bio 2010; 8: e1000412). Reports of clinical trials must conform to the CONSORT statement and reports of systematic reviews of clinical trials must conform to the PRISMA statement. This journal is a member of, and subscribes to the principles of, the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).

For Research papers (or any paper involving a research study) involving human participants or data, this must have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee. A statement detailing this, including the name of the ethics committee and the reference number where appropriate, must appear in all manuscripts reporting such research. If a study has been granted an exemption from requiring ethical approval, this should also be stated in the manuscript (including the name of the ethics committee that granted the exemption). Manuscripts may be rejected if the editor considers that the research has not been carried out within an appropriate ethical framework.

Consent to participate

For all research involving human participants, informed consent to participate in the study should be obtained from participants (or their parent/legal guardian in the case of children under 16) and a statement to this effect should appear in the manuscript. For manuscripts reporting studies involving vulnerable groups (for example, unconscious patients) where there is the potential for coercion or where consent may not have been fully informed, manuscripts will be considered at the editor’s discretion and may be referred to an internal research integrity group for further scrutiny.

Consent for publication

For all manuscripts that include potentially identifiable data, images or information relating to an individual person, written informed consent for the publication of these details must be obtained from that person (or their parent/legal guardian in the case of children under 18). If the person has died, consent for publication must be obtained from their next of kin. The manuscript must include a statement that written informed consent for publication was obtained. Authors can use a consent form from their own institution or region, if appropriate. The consent form must state that the data/images will be available to subscribers of the journal, or if the paper is made open access, will be freely available on the internet and may be seen by the general public. The consent form must be made available to the editor if requested and will be treated confidentially. In cases where images are entirely unidentifiable, consent for publication of images may not be required. The final decision on whether consent to publish is required lies with the editor.

Competing interests

Authors must declare all competing interests in relation to their work. All submitted manuscripts must include a ‘Conflict of interest’ section at the end of the manuscript listing all competing interests (financial and non-financial). Where authors have no competing interests, the statement should read “The author(s) declare(s) that they have no conflict of interest”. The editor may ask for further information relating to competing interests. Editors and reviewers are also required to declare any competing interests and may be excluded from the peer review process if a competing interest exists. 


The main author (named as the corresponding author on the manuscript) should be prepared to communicate with the editorial office and with all other authors (where appropriate) regarding the submission and preparation of the paper. Each author listed must have contributed sufficiently to the intellectual content of the submission. To qualify as a contributing author, one must meet all of the following criteria:

  1. Conceived and/or designed the work that led to the submission, acquired data, and/or played an important role in interpreting the results
  2. Drafted or revised the manuscript
  3. Approved the final version.

Individuals who made direct contributions to the work but do not meet all of the above criteria should be noted in the Acknowledgements section of the manuscript. Any changes to the author list after submission, such as a change in the order of the authors, or the deletion or addition of authors, must be approved by every author.

Research Data Policy

We strongly encourage that all datasets on which the conclusions of the paper rely should be available to readers. We encourage authors to ensure that their datasets are either deposited in publicly available repositories (where available and appropriate) or presented in the main manuscript or additional supporting files whenever possible. Where one does not exist, the information must be made available to referees at submission and to readers promptly upon request. Any restrictions on material availability or other relevant information must be disclosed in the manuscript's Methods section and should include details of how materials and information may be obtained. Please see the journal's guidelines on Research Data policy here.

Plagiarism and fabrication

Plagiarism is when an author attempts to pass off someone else's work as his or her own. Duplicate publication, sometimes called self-plagiarism, occurs when an author reuses substantial parts of his or her own published work without providing the appropriate references. Minor plagiarism without dishonest intent is relatively frequent, for example, when an author reuses parts of an introduction from an earlier paper.

Springer Nature Journals use CrossCheck, a plagiarism detection software tool, to identify instances of overlapping and similar text in submitted manuscripts. CrossCheck is a multi-publisher initiative to screen published and submitted content for originality. Find out more about CrossCheck.
If a case of plagiarism comes to light after a paper is published, the Journal will conduct a preliminary investigation, utilising the guidelines of the Committee on Publication Ethics. If plagiarism is proven, the Journal will contact the author's institute and funding agencies as appropriate. The paper containing the plagiarism may also be formally retracted or subject to correction.

If you would like further assistance or advice, you can contact the editorial office at