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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 389-396

Oral Health Knowledge and Attitude among Final Year Nursing Undergraduate Students in Bangalore City, India

1 Department Of Public Health Dentistry, Indira Gandhi Institute of Dental Sciences, Pillyarkuppam, Puducherry-607402, India
2 Department Of Public Health Dentistry, Raja Rajeswari Dental College, Hospital & Research Center, Bangalore, India

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Purpose of the Study: To Assess the Oral Health Knowledge and Attitude of Final Year Nursing Undergraduate Students. Methodology: A questionnaire study was conducted in five nursing colleges in Bangalore city selected by simple random sampling .The total number of final year nursing undergraduates was 254 out of which 208 where present on the day of survey. The study group provided answers to a 26 item questionnaire that was grouped into six dimensions. Data analysis was done using spss 11.0 for windows and systat 8.0. Z-test was used to find the significance between assumed proportion and observed proportion. Results: 10% of the participants were males, 91.% knew how many permanent teeth are present in a healthy adult but only 51.% knew how many deciduous teeth are present in a healthy child. More than 50% of the nursing students had adequate knowledge in oral hygiene practice. In identifying oral disease, the student nurses have good knowledge in identifying calculus and plaque, reason for gum bleeding, early identification of tooth decay and hazards of tobacco chewing. They are not clear about the number of dental specialties, 35% said there are 9 specialties and 34% said there were only 7. Student nurses were not able to identify the treatment provided by a periodontist as about 40% said they fill teeth. Unanimously, the student nurses said they want to work in preventive and community dentistry and they also want to learn more about the oral cavity and oral diseases. Conclusions: The student nurses are confused in some aspects like number of deciduous teeth in a healthy child, what kind of a tooth brush should be used, how often the brush should be changed, what kind of tongue cleaner is preferable, what treatment does a periodontitis perform and what needs to be done if a patient present with a tooth ache. So a dental curriculum should be introduced in the nurses undergraduate training program and the program should be housed a public health dentistry department as a part of community nursing.

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