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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 17  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 206-212

Oral health awareness and oral hygiene status of 12- and 15-year-old children in Chennai

1 Department of Public Health Dentistry, Faculty of Dental Sciences, Sri Ramachandra Institute of Higher Education and Research, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Public Health Dentistry, Meenakshi Ammal Dental College and Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
3 Department of Public Health Dentistry, Narayana Dental College and Hospital, Nellore, Andhra Pradesh, India
4 Dental Public Health, Riyadh Elm University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Akila Ganesh
7/16, First Main Road, Srinivasa Nagar, Kolathur, Chennai - 600 099, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jiaphd.jiaphd_214_18

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Background: Oral diseases can be considered as a public health problem due to their high prevalence and significant social impact. Aim: This study aimed to assess dental knowledge, oral hygiene, oral hygiene practices, and eating habits among 12- and 15-year-old children in Chennai and to correlate the level of oral hygiene with oral hygiene practices. Materials and Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional survey was conducted among 1600 children from various schools in Chennai. Simple random sampling methodology was used to select the schools from all the four zones. The methodology included a close-ended questionnaire on oral health awareness and recording of Oral Hygiene Index-Simplified (Greene and Vermillion, 1964). The statistical analysis was performed using SPSS software, version 16. Student's t-test and analysis of variance were used for the comparison of two and more than two groups, respectively, followed by post hoc test. Pearson's correlation coefficient was used to find the correlation between two or more variables. The level of significance was set at P < 0.05. Results: Around 1285 (80.3%) children felt that tooth decay is a disease that destroys the teeth and 1101 (68.8%) knew that gum infection makes gums to bleed. Overall distribution reported that 1018 (63.6%) children had fair oral hygiene. Poor oral hygiene score was seen more in government schoolchildren than private schoolchildren with highly statistically significant results. Conclusions: The overall knowledge on oral health was good among the children. Nearly 90% of the children had fair debris score. Oral hygiene practices were positively correlated with the level of oral hygiene.

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