This article is primarily an adapted Dutch translation of an editorial paper in the Journal of the American Dental Association. The editorial paper described a recent mumps epidemic in the United States of America and the possible role of dentists in the early identification of mumps infected individuals. It also described the risk of a pandemic with the avian influenza virus H5N1 and the development of a vaccine against the virus. The second part discusses the risks of an outbreak of mumps or H5N1-influenza in the Netherlands and describes the precautions of the Dutch government for a future influenza pandemic. Is it concluded that dentists in the Netherlands have a limited role in the identification of mumps patients and in an influenza epidemic. However, dentists should obtain actual information on all infectious diseases regularly.