Purpose: To identify the oral health attitudes/behaviour among dental students in Jordan, and analyse the variations in oral health attitudes based on gender and level of education.
Materials and Methods: Out of the 653 registered dental students at the faculty of dentistry, 580 students (455 females and 125 males, mean age = 20.1 ± 1.6 years) participated in the study (response rate 89%). The Hiroshima University-Dental Behavioural Inventory (HU-DBI) was used to assess oral heath attitudes and behaviour of the participants. Data were analysed using the chi-square test, and statistical significance was set at P < 0.05.
Results: Females had better oral health attitudes and behaviour, especially towards visiting the dentist, toothbrushing habits and oral hygiene practice (P < 0.05). Also, students from the higher years had better oral health attitudes, behaviour and knowledge, especially towards gingival health, oral hygiene practice, toothbrushing and visiting the dentist (P < 0.05).
Conclusion: Dental students in Jordan had poor oral health attitudes and behaviour. Females had better oral health knowledge, attitudes and behaviour than males. With increasing years of study, some aspects of dental students’ oral health behaviour and attitudes improved. However, this improvement was limited and students should be encouraged to become an example of oral health for their society. Better comprehensive dental education with early exposure to dental health and prevention was suggested to improve dental students’ oral health attitudes and behavior.
Keywords: dental students, HU-DBI, oral health behaviour