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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 16  |  Page : 215-220

Knowledge, attitude and practice of oral health among patients treated in various Dental clinics in Thoothukudi district, Tamilnadu

1 Registrar, Manonmaniam Sundarannr University, Tirunelveli, India
2 Research Scholar, Department of Economics, Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Tirunelveli, India
3 Assistant Professor, Department of Conununity Medicine, SMIMS, Kulasckharam, India

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Introduction: Oral health is an integral part of general health; rather oral cavity can rightly be called the gateway of the body. Poor oral health conditions may adversely affect general health. Attainment of oral health is based upon the awareness of dietary habits and oral hygiene practices. Objective: The objective of this study was to measure the knowledge, attitudes and practices on oral health among the patients treated in Thoothukudi district Materials and Methods: 400 patients treated at 4 clinics in Thoothukudi District during the month of March 2010 were selected. The patients between the age of 18 and 50 as the most productive age group were considered for the study. A structured questionnaire with questions related to socio demographic background, oral health knowledge, altitudes and practices was used to collect the relevant data from the patients at their home. Results: 93% of the respondents reported that tooth decay was the major problem and gum disease was the next major problem (41.5%). 301 persons (75.3%) reported eating sweets/ice-cream/ chocolates as the main factor causing dental problems. 276 (69.5%) persons reported not brushing regularly was the other major reason for dental problems. Majority of the respondents 344 persons (86.0%) used paste for cleaning and only 56 patients (14%) used powder for cleaning the teeth. 89.8% (359) of the study population had never used any oral hygiene aids. Conclusions: Oral health knowledge, attitudes and practices in the study population is reasonably good, but still dental education is needed to improve oral health. To improve the overall dental health the importance oral health education on the ill effects of personal habits like smoking, alcohol and chewing pan masala to be stressed.

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