The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
ECB: Conceptualization, study design, data collection, data analysis, manuscript draft, critical editing of the manuscript for important intellectual content. AEA: Study design and critical editing of the manuscript for important intellectual content. UOM: Data collection and critical editing of the manuscript for important intellectual content. MVU: Data collection and critical editing of the manuscript for important intellectual content. IAN: Study design and critical editing of the manuscript for important intellectual content. OCN: Data analysis and critical editing of the manuscript for important intellectual content. All authors read and approved the final draft.
ECB: Senior Lecturer, Department of Paediatrics, College of Medicine University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
AEA: Senior Lecturer, Department of Preventive Dentistry, College of Medicine University of Nigeria Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
OMU: Consultant Paediatrician, Federal Medical Centre, Umuahia, Abia State, Nigeria.
MVU: Senior Lecturer, Department of Paediatrics, College of Medicine University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
IAN: Professor, Department of Paediatrics, College of Medicine University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
OCN: Professor, Department of Community Medicine, College of Medicine University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
Majority of the oral diseases in children are preventable. The paediatricians owing to the unique position they occupy in child care are invaluable in achieving standard oral and dental healthcare in children. This study was aimed at assessing the paediatricians’ views on basic oral healthcare in children in Nigeria.
This was a cross sectional descriptive study. Respondents were paediatricians attending the 2015 Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference of the Paediatric Association of Nigeria. Relevant information sought from the respondents included: socio- demographic characteristics, duration and location of practice; specific questions on knowledge of basic oral health care in children and recommendations for improvement in knowledge of oral and dental health among paediatricians based on standard clinical guidelines. Data was analyzed using the SPSS version 20.0 and presented in simple frequencies and percentages. Test of associations was done using chi- square while logistic regression analysis was used to determine significantly associated variables (p < 0.05).
A total of 121 paediatricians were recruited. 108 (89.3 %) reported that children should be referred to dental health care when caregivers/older patients report dental problems (x2 = 9.377; p = 0.02). 53.7 % felt that examination of the oral cavity should be routine while 61 (50.4 %) of them reported that health education should be given to caregivers/mothers about nursing caries starting early in life. Majority of the respondents 66 (54.5 %) disapproved gum pad cleaning of young infants. 32 (26.4 %) suggested starting tooth brushing in infants as soon as a tooth appear in a child while 112 (92.6 %) recommended the disapproval of pacifiers in infants/younger children. 93 (76.9 %) were of the opinion that the paediatrician is competent in identifying and handling of basic oral health care in children. However, 108 (89.3 %) recommended that the current postgraduate curriculum in paediatrics should incorporate knowledge of basic oral health care in children.
Majority of the paediatricians were found to have limited knowledge about some basic oral health care in children. It is recommended that the current postgraduate training curriculum in paediatrics in our setting should incorporate knowledge of basic oral healthcare in children.
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- Paediatricians’ perception about oral healthcare of children in Nigeria
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