Introduction: The importance of consistent, accurate and unambiguous messages are well documented in oral health promotion literature. Whether the reality of delivering messages in the field fulfils these principle is questionable. Objective: This paper explores the perceptions of dental professionals, healthcare professionals and lay community members with regard to key oral health messages in order to highlight any inconsistencies and knowledge gaps between and within groups for disease risk factors. Method: A questionnaire was administered to individuals who belonged to three groups: dental professionals, healthcare professionals and lay community members. The questionnaire established knowledge regarding risk factors for caries, periodontal disease and erosion. Results: Thirty-five (57.4%) of the dental group answered the whole questionnaire correctly, with 22 (27.8%) and 9 (5.1%) of the healthcare and lay community group answering the whole questionnaire correctly, respectively. The question of fluoride levels in children's toothpaste was the main reason for incorrect answers in the dental group. Conclusions: The results of this survey demonstrate a knowledge gradient from dental professionals through to healthcare professionals and then to lay members of the community. The knowledge base observed in the dental group is reflected in the other two groups as would be expected albeit with a significant gap between each group. As expected the dental professionals are generally well informed, but not as well informed as could be expected.