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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 20  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 403-406

Oral Health Status and Oral Health-Related Behavior among Schoolchildren of Tumkur


Department of Public Health Dentistry, Sri Siddhartha Dental College and Hospital, Sri Siddhartha Academy of Higher Education, Tumkur, Karnataka, India

Date of Submission30-Jun-2021
Date of Decision01-Apr-2022
Date of Acceptance09-Sep-2022
Date of Web Publication19-Dec-2022

Correspondence Address:
J V Bharatesh
Department of Public Health Dentistry, Sri Siddhartha Dental College and Hospital, Sri Siddhartha Academy of Higher Education, Agalkote, Tumkuru - 572 107, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jiaphd.jiaphd_119_21

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  Abstract 


Background: The health of the mouth and dentition plays a major role in the life of the child and hence given the main concern with objective to assess oral health status and behavior among schoolchildren and action to be taken to maintain good oral health and behavior among schoolchildren through school oral health programs. Aim: To assess oral health status and oral health behavior among schoolchildren of Tumkur. Methodology: A cross-sectional survey was conducted among schoolchildren of Tumkur using the convenience sampling method. Oral health status was assessed using modified World Health Organization pro forma and behaviors related to oral health was assessed using a pretested questionnaire. Data were analyzed using SPSS software version 18 where descriptive statistics and Chi-square test were applied. P <0.05 was considered statistically significant Results: A total of 3641 children were included in the study from 14 randomly selected schools with the age group ranging from 6 to 16 years. Decayed tooth was observed to be more in primary (36%) as well as permanent teeth (62%) and only 30% of the children mentioned they had visited a dentist in the past 1 year and the pain was the main reason for their visit. Majority of their practice was self-relied (94%). Conclusion: Overall scenario of the children's oral health is not deplorable, care should be taken to educate them about proper brushing techniques and reduce consumption of sugar.

Keywords: Decayed missing filled teeth, oral health status, schoolchildren


How to cite this article:
Bennadi D, Mythri H, Bharatesh J V. Oral Health Status and Oral Health-Related Behavior among Schoolchildren of Tumkur. J Indian Assoc Public Health Dent 2022;20:403-6

How to cite this URL:
Bennadi D, Mythri H, Bharatesh J V. Oral Health Status and Oral Health-Related Behavior among Schoolchildren of Tumkur. J Indian Assoc Public Health Dent [serial online] 2022 [cited 2023 Feb 5];20:403-6. Available from: https://www.jiaphd.org/text.asp?2022/20/4/403/364010




  Introduction Top


Health has been declared a fundamental human right. Oral health is an integral part of general health; rather oral cavity can rightly be called the gateway of the body. Good oral health improves general health and quality of life and contributes to self-image and social interaction. The health of the mouth and dentition plays a major role in the life of the child, through facilitating nutritional intake, providing a nonverbal means of expressing happiness and sadness, and allowing for vocal communication. Therefore, a healthy mouth with a full complement of teeth should be the goal for all children.[1]

Oral health in children and adolescents was accepted as the main concern action, while countries were encouraged to develop preventive approaches to health education in schools through partnerships between families, oral health professionals, and communities by improving access to preventive and curative oral health services.[2]

Dental caries is one of the most common multi-causal, diet-dependent infectious diseases, affecting a huge proportion of the world's population regardless of age, gender, or ethnicity.[3],[4]

The World Health Organization (WHO) goals for 2000 included a 50% reduction in dental caries for 6-year-old children and globally an average of the decayed, missing, and filled teeth index not exceeding more than 3.0 for 12 years old.[5] Systematic reviews on the prevalence of dental caries in primary teeth and permanent teeth of children showed[6] 46% and 54% of dental caries respectively.

School health is an important aspect of any community health program. It is an economical and powerful means of raising community health in future generations. Data on oral health status among schoolchildren are essential to take up preventive and curative services accordingly.[2] Hence, the present survey was done with an aim to analyze the baseline data and act accordingly.

  1. Prevalence of oral health diseases-dental caries, gingival, malocclusion and dental fluorosis, and obvious oral health problems among schoolchildren
  2. Oral health-related behavior: Oral hygiene practice-Brushing aids, brushing methods, frequency, visit to dentist, and snacking habits.



  Methodology Top


A cross-sectional survey was conducted among schoolchildren of Tumkur, during January–December 2019. A total of 14 schools were included randomly (convenience random sampling technique) in the study comprising a total number of 3641 (schoolchildren who were present during the study in their respective school) children. All the children who voluntarily agreed to participate were included in the study. Prior permission was taken from the school authorities and ethical clearance was obtained from IEC, SSMC. Oral health behavior was recorded using a self-administered questionnaire consisting of 10 questions. On the day of screening, Type III examination was done to record the oral health status using WHO pro forma.[7],[8] Later, the data were analyzed using the SPSS version 18.0 (SPSS Inc., New York, USA) where descriptive statistics and Chi-square test were applied. P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.


  Results Top


A total of 3641 children were included in the study from 14 randomly selected schools with the age group ranging from 6 to 16 years. Male-to-female ratio was noted to be 32:68 [Table 1].
Table 1: Distribution of schoolchildren according to demographic details

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Response to their oral health behaviors stated that all of them daily brushed their teeth with toothbrush and paste in horizontal direction, majority being once daily (96%). None of them used any other oral hygiene aids and majority of their practice was self-relied (94%). 78% of them mentioned to change the brush when it ware out and 62% agreed to consume one or the other form of sugar on a daily basis. Only 30% of the children mentioned they had visited a dentist in the past 1 year and pain was the main reason for their visit [Table 2].
Table 2: Distribution of schoolchildren according to the oral health behaviors

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Decayed tooth was observed to be more in primary (36%) as well as permanent teeth (62%) compared to filled tooth, maxillary first molar being the most commonly affected teeth [Table 3].
Table 3: Dental caries status among schoolchildren

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68% of children had gingivitis and 38% had intrinsic stains [Graph 1] and [Graph 2]. Crowding was the most common type of malocclusion observed in children compared to others, in which lower anterior crowding was more common than upper anterior. 12% of the children had increased anterior maxillary overjet and out of which 5% had Ellis Class I fracture affecting the central incisor [Table 4]. Other oral anomalies are not noted in any of the children.

Table 4: Malocclusion status among schoolchildren

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  Discussion Top


Dental caries is an irreversible infectious microbiologic disease of the calcified tissues of teeth, characterized by localized dissolution.[8] It is most prevalent among children and complications may include dentoalveolar infection and pain and this has an adverse effect on the quality of life of children and certainly increases the financial burden of the family and studies have clearly established that dental caries is not a static process but rather a dynamic process of demineralization and remineralization happens continuously.[9] 61% of children aged 6–12 years have at least one decayed tooth, and dental caries is seen in all strata of the society, thus this disease can impose a great financial burden on the society.[10]

The study was done on a cross-section of school-going children in the age group of 6–16 years of Tumkur to estimate their oral health status and oral health behavior. Children of the age group of 6–16 years were included as they include 12 and 15 years the age groups of WHO.[7]

In the present study, all the children examined used toothbrushes and toothpastes this is in line with the findings of the National Oral Health Survey and Fluoride Mapping 2002–2003[11] and a similar study by Thakur et al.[12] This may be attributed to increased awareness of oral health in cities and ease of access to toothbrush and toothpaste.

The present study showed that over 96.4% of the children brush their teeth only once per day. Similar results were also found by other authors,[13] whereas other researchers reported that children brush their teeth twice or more per day.[14] The reduced oral hygiene condition of most of the schoolchildren is related to irregular tooth brushing habits, and also due to inadequate brushing time, and ineffective brushing technique or both factors. Hence, it is imperative to teach and train children to modify their behavior in maintaining better oral health.[15]

The present study indicates that around 30% of the children had visited the dentist and 90% of them had pain and remaining for other reasons and this may be attributed to easy accessibility to dental clinics.[11] The present study indicates 62% of children consumed sugar in different forms on a daily basis and only 26% of them had sugary items occasionally, the findings were in line with a study done by Kabasi et al.[16] and relatively more than the studies by Varenne et al.[17]

The present study showed that 62% of school-going children had dental caries and 38% were caries free and is similar to other studies done on school-going children in urban areas[14],[18] and much higher in the studies conducted in Bengaluru[19] urban areas of Burkina Faso, Africa,[20] urban Delhi India,[21] Shimla city India,[22] Hyderabad,[23] and Jharkhand[24] and lower in a study by Narang et al.[25] This may be attributed to increased consumption of sugar in food items and also on the frequency of brushing the majority of the children (96%) brushed their teeth once daily.

The prevalence of gingivitis among the schoolchildren in the present study was 32% which was less than their counterparts in the study done by Sharva et al.,[26] Chinna et al.[18] Zhang et al.[27] Petersen et al.[28] This may be attributed to better oral hygiene awareness and also continued use of tooth brush and toothpaste. The present study showed 28% of the children had malocclusion which is much lesser than the studies done by Das et al.[29] in children in Bengaluru.


  Conclusion Top


The study explored the oral health status and oral health behavior among schoolchildren in Tumkur. All of the children claimed to use toothbrush and toothpaste but their technique of brushing was questionable. Dental caries was found among 62% of the children and 32% had gingivitis. The consumption of sugar in food was high and changing of toothbrushes was not done at frequent intervals. Although the overall scenario of the children's oral health is not deplorable, care should be taken to educate them about proper brushing techniques and reduce consumption of sugar.

Limitations and future avenues of research of the study

A small study sample is one of the drawbacks of our study. Further interventional studies should be conducted in relation to oral health education, preventive measures, and maintenance of oral health status among schoolchildren.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

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Kabasi S, Tangade P, Pal S, Shah AF. Dental caries and oral health behavior in 12-year-old schoolchildren in Moradabad city, Uttar Pradesh, India. J Indian Assoc Public Health Dent 2014;12:167-72.  Back to cited text no. 16
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Chinna SK, Acharya AK, Chinna R. Oral health status and treatment needs of 12-year-old school children among urban and rural Areas of Raichur Taluk, Karnataka, India. Indian J Community Med 2019;44:S27-9.  Back to cited text no. 18
    
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    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4]



 

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