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Oral Health & Preventive Dentistry

Edited by Prof. Dr. Jean-François Roulet, Prof. Dr. Dr. Niklaus P. Lang, Prof. Dr. Palle Holmstrup

Official journal of the Academy of Minimally Invasive Dentistry, the World Congress of Microdentistry, and the European Society of Preventive Dentistry

ISSN (print) 1602-1622 • ISSN (online) 1757-9996


Winter 2006
Volume 4 , Issue 4

Pages: 265-271
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Oral Health Behaviour of Iranian Dental School Educators

Khami, Mohammad R. / Virtanen, Jorma I. / Jafarian, Mohammad / Murtomaa, Heikki

Purpose: To investigate oral health behaviour and smoking habits among academic staff members in Iran’s dental schools in relation to their personal and academic background characteristics. Materials and Methods: Out of 15 state dental schools, seven were selected randomly as clusters. All of the educators who were present (total n = 363) were asked to voluntarily fill in a self-administered pre-tested questionnaire. In addition to background and academic characteristics, the questionnaire requested information on smoking habits, oral self-care, and dental check-ups. Recommended oral self-care was defined as brushing at least twice a day and frequent use of fluoridated toothpaste. Chi-square test and binary logistic regression model served for statistical analyses. Results: A total of 291 educators filled in the questionnaire (response rate = 80%). Women reported higher frequencies of brushing (p = 0.001), use of fluoridated toothpaste (p = 0.002), flossing (p < 0.01) and eating sugary snacks (p = 0.01) compared with men. Habitual cigarette and pipe smoking was reported by 22% and 3% of male educators respectively. Familiarity with the field of oral public health correlated to higher frequencies of brushing (p = 0.05) and flossing (p = 0.03). Smoker educators reported less favourable oral self-care habits than non-smokers. Female gender (p = 0.002, OR = 2.7) and familiarity with the oral public health field (p < 0.01, OR = 2.5) were associated with recommended oral self-care criteria. Conclusion: Dental educators should have positive attitudes towards and beliefs in effectiveness of preventive dentistry in order to increase public awareness of its importance.

Keywords: dental education, dental faculty, oral hygiene, preventive dentistry, smoking

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