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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 14-21

Oral health status and use of sugary products among adolescents in urban and rural schools in Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia


1 Student College of Dentistry, King Faisal University, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia
2 Teaching Assistant Department of Periodontology, College of Dentistry, King Faisal University, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia
3 General Dental Practitioner, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia
4 PhD Candidate Department of Dental Public Health, University of Finland, Finland
5 Professor Department of Periodontology, College of Dentistry, King Faisal University, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia
6 Professor Department of Dental Public Health, College of Dentistry, King Faisal University, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Syed Akhtar Hussain Bokhari
Department of Preventive Dental Sciences, College of Dentistry, King Faisal University, Al-Ahsa
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/sjos.SJOralSci_30_20

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Introduction: Diet of an individual plays a remarkable role in maintaining health. Urbanization has had a great impact on the food habits of the society with the balance shifting to sweetened and refined food consumption. Dietary habits also has remarkable contribution to dental and overall health status. Aim: This study was designed to evaluate oral health awareness, practices, status, and the use of sugary products among urban and rural high school adolescents of Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia. Materials and methods: A cross-sectional mixed study was conducted using questionnaire and clinical examination among two female and two male urban and rural schools. Information on oral health awareness, practices, and use of sugar products were obtained using a self-reported structured questionnaire. Oral health status was assessed using decayed, missing, and filled teeth (DMFT) index, gingival index, Angle's classification at University dental clinics. The Chi-square test and t-test were performed using SPSS. Results and Discussion: Ninety-seven urban and one hundred and twenty-eight rural students with a median age of 17 years for males and 16 years for females completed the study. Eighty-five percent urban and 86% rural students demonstrated oral health awareness and practices, showing significant level for rural females (54%, P = 0.002) and urban females (72%, P = 0.006). Ninety-four percent urban and 89% of rural students used sugary products with a significant level for rural females (P = 0.001) for carbonated drinks only. Eighty-six percent of students had decayed, 22% missing and 38% filled teeth. Mean DMFT was 7.0 ± 4.7. Ninety-five (95%) participants showed mild-to-moderate gingivitis, 35% malocclusion, 11% other oral pathologies. Rural and urban difference for oral health parameters was significant only for filled teeth (P = 0.001) for urban and missing teeth (P = 0.019) among 15 years old for rural adolescents. Conclusion: This study demonstrates a good level of oral health awareness, but poor oral health status among both urban and rural students with an insignificant difference for most of the parameters studied.


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