|Year : 2017 | Volume
| Issue : 4 | Page : 392-394
Oral health-related knowledge, attitude, and practices among auto drivers in South Chennai
Akila Ganesh1, S Ramkumar2, M Rajkumar1, R Bhavyaa3, Lakshmi Ramkumar4, SK Balaji5
1 Department of Public Health Dentistry, Faculty of Dental Sciences, Sri Ramachandra University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Parvathy Hospital, Sri Ramachandra University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
3 Faculty of Dental Sciences, Sri Ramachandra University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
4 Dr. Ram Dental Care, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
5 Department of Periodontics, Faculty of Dental Sciences, Sri Ramachandra University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
|Date of Web Publication||13-Dec-2017|
Dr. Akila Ganesh
7/16, First Main Road, Srinivasa Nagar, Kolathur, Chennai - 600 099, Tamil Nadu
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Introduction: India is home to three-quarters of the world's auto-rickshaws, which are three-wheeled motor vehicles that are hired to move both people and goods. Since there were hardly any studies reported in literature on auto drivers, we planned to do a study on auto drivers. Knowledge, attitude, and practices (KAPs) being the basis of any public health study, we decided to start with KAP among auto drivers. Aim: To determine the KAP regarding oral health among auto drivers in south Chennai. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional questionnaire study was carried out among auto drivers in Chennai. The Chennai Corporation is divided into four zones - north, south, east, and central. Out of these zones, South zone was selected by convenience sampling. Simple random sampling methodology was used to select various auto stands in South Chennai. Data were collected by means of a self-administered close-ended questionnaire. Results: About 47.1% of the subjects knew that tooth decay is a disease that destroys the tooth. About 63.7% of the subjects were aware that tobacco consumption causes oral cancer. The importance of oral health was perceived by 96.1% of the participants. While 61.8% of the subjects performed toothbrushing once a day, 50% of the auto drivers changed their toothbrush once in 3 months. Majority of the subjects below 35 years did not have the practice of using tobacco, whereas a majority of them above 35 years used tobacco every day with a statistical significance at a level of 0.024. Conclusion: The overall oral health-related KAP among the auto drivers seems satisfactory.
Keywords: Auto drivers, Chennai, cross-sectional, knowledge, attitude, and practices
|How to cite this article:|
Ganesh A, Ramkumar S, Rajkumar M, Bhavyaa R, Ramkumar L, Balaji S K. Oral health-related knowledge, attitude, and practices among auto drivers in South Chennai. J Indian Assoc Public Health Dent 2017;15:392-4
| Introduction|| |
Oral health is an essential and integral part to the overall general health and living. A problem-free mouth helps an individual to eat, speak, and socialize without having any active disease, symptoms, or embarrassment. Oral diseases are one among the major public health problem affecting humanity owing to the high prevalence and incidence. The later seems to be a personification leading to exaggerated poor oral health.
Maintenance of general health is dependent on oral health. In addition to loss of working hours, oral problems also cause pain, agony, functional, and esthetic problems. Hence, in the long run, they tend to have a significant impact on our economy. The good practice of keeping the mouth clean and healthy by brushing and flossing is called oral hygiene. This helps to prevent dental caries and periodontal diseases. Knowledge on oral health is an important prerequisite for health-related behavior. With increasing evidence showing the link between oral hygiene to various medical conditions such as pancreatic cancer in men, stroke or ischemic attacks, type 1 and 2 diabetics, and preterm deliveries, it is very essential to educate the general public on the ill effects of not visiting a dentist regularly.
Brushing once daily is a common oral hygiene practice, but they do not possess adequate knowledge of proper toothbrushing. With improved oral hygiene and a decreased consumption of sugar products, the prevalence of periodontal diseases and dental caries has greatly decreased. However, many developing  and middle east countries , have not seen this favorable decreasing trend of dental caries. In spite of India being home to three-quarters of the world's auto-rickshaws, there were hardly any studies reported in the literature on auto drivers, knowledge, attitude, and practices (KAP) being the basis of any public health study, we decided to start with KAP among auto drivers.
| Materials and Methods|| |
A cross-sectional study was carried out among auto drivers in south Chennai for the duration of 1 week in the month of April 2015. The questionnaire consisted of ten close-ended questions on oral health-related KAP. They were translated into the vernacular language (Tamil). Face and content validation of questionnaire was done by two renowned persons in the field of Public Health Dentistry.
The calculation of sample size was based on a study done by Raja Pandian et al. assuming a 95% confidence interval and a precision of 10%. The power of the test was 80%. The estimated sample size was 100. The formula 4pq/d2, wherePis the prevalence, q is (1 − p), and d is the allowable margin of error (precision) was used for sample size estimation.
The Chennai Corporation is divided into four zones - north, south, east, and central. Out of these zones, South zone has been selected by convenience sampling. Simple random sampling methodology was used to select various auto stands in South Chennai. The auto drivers who were willing to participate in the study and those who gave consent were included in the study. The questionnaire was given to the selected subjects. In case, the subjects need guidance in filling the questionnaire, they were assisted.
Quantitative data were expressed in terms of mean and standard deviation. Nominal data was expressed using frequency and percentage. Comparison between age groups based on the prevalence of tobacco usage was made using Chi-square test.
| Results|| |
While 47.1% of the subjects knew that tooth decay is a disease that destroys the tooth, 34.3% of the subjects had a good knowledge of the fact that periodontal disease causes gum bleeding, whereas an equal percentage of the subjects were not aware of the same [Figure 1]. Majority of the subjects were aware of the fact that sugar consumption causes dental caries. About 63.7% of the subjects were aware that tobacco consumption causes oral cancer. The importance of oral health was perceived by 96.1% of the subjects [Figure 2].
About 61.8% of the subjects performed toothbrushing once a day, whereas 35.3% of the subjects brushed twice daily [Figure 3]. While 86.3% of the subjects used toothbrush and toothpaste to clean their teeth every day and only 50% of the auto drivers changed their toothbrush once in 3 months. Tooth pain was the main reason to visit the dentist in 37.3% of the subjects [Figure 4].
Majority of the subjects below 35 years did not have the practice of using tobacco, whereas a majority of them above 35 years used tobacco every day with a statistical significance at a level of 0.024 [Table 1].
| Discussion|| |
The result of this study indicates the KAP of auto drivers to oral health.
While 34.3% of the subjects had a good knowledge about the fact that periodontal diseases cause gum bleeding, equal percentage of the subjects were not aware of the same. According to several studies, there is a link between gum diseases and aspiration pneumonia, rheumatoid arthritis, eye infection, cavernous sinus thrombosis, preterm delivery, and diabetes., About 63.7% of the subjects were aware that tobacco consumption causes oral cancer. The awareness about the ill effects of tobacco can be correlated with national oral survey and fluoride mapping 2002. Usage of tobacco results in a greater risk of cancer, pulmonary, and cardiovascular diseases. The adverse effects of smokeless tobacco are pancreatic cancer; Alzheimer's disease  can cause complications to the mother and fetus., While smokeless tobacco is physiologically addictive, smoking tobacco is psychologically and physiologically addictive.
About 35.3% of the subjects brushed twice daily, while in a study done by Raja Pandian et al., only 9% of the auto drivers brushed twice daily.
Although 96% of the subjects knew the importance of a clean oral cavity, very few actually did something for it. About 63.7% of the subjects were aware that tobacco causes oral cancer, so there is a need to conduct awareness programs on tobacco cessation and referral to counseling and quitlines for targeting auto drivers, especially above 35 years.
The study has some limitations. Use of close-ended questionnaire was a major drawback. Thus, there is a need to have more awareness programs to improve their attitude toward oral health. More programs on cessation of tobacco in drivers above 35 years are also needed for the betterment of the community as a whole.
| Conclusion|| |
The overall oral health-related KAP among the auto drivers seems satisfactory but more oral health programs targeted for the goodwill of the community are needed to improve the same.
Financial support and sponsorship
Conflicts of interest
There are no conflicts of interest.
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[Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3], [Figure 4]