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24.09.2019 | Ausgabe 12/2019

Maternal and Child Health Journal 12/2019

The Impact of Adaptive Functioning and Oral Hygiene Practices on Observed Tooth-Brushing Performance Among Preschool Children with Special Health Care Needs

Zeitschrift:
Maternal and Child Health Journal > Ausgabe 12/2019
Autoren:
Ni Zhou, Hai Ming Wong, Colman McGrath
Wichtige Hinweise

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Abstract

Objectives

To investigate the impact of adaptive functioning and oral hygiene practices on tooth-brushing performance among preschool children with special health care needs (SHCN).

Methods

A cross-sectional study was conducted in Special Child Care Centers. Children’s tooth-brushing performance was assessed by a standardized 13-step pro forma. Information regarding children’s socio-economic status, adaptive skills, and oral hygiene practices were collected. Bivariate analysis and ANCOVA were used to explore the potential factors which might be associated with children’s tooth-brushing performance.

Results

The tooth-brushing assessment was provided to 379 children with SHCN. Approximately 3% of the recruited children performed the whole tooth-brushing procedure independently. The number of tooth-brushing steps practiced by those children was 4.47 ± 3.56. Children who had established tooth-brushing habit before age one practiced more tooth-brushing steps than children who brushed their teeth after age one (p = 0.029). When children’s age, gender, and socio-economic status were adjusted, children who had established regular tooth-brushing habit or children who had high levels of adaptive skills showed better tooth-brushing performance than their peers. Children who used gauze, cotton swab, or dental floss to clean their teeth practiced fewer key tooth-brushing steps than their peers who had never used additional cleaning approaches (p = 0.038).

Conclusions for Practice

Children’s tooth-brushing performance was associated with adaptive skills and oral hygiene practices. Tooth-brushing training should be provided to children with SHCN in early childhood. For children who had limitations in adaptive functioning, parental assistance or supervision is recommended to guarantee the efficacy and safety of daily tooth brushing.

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