Medical Students’ Exposure, Knowledge, and Attitudes Towards Early Childhood Caries Etiology and Prevention

Hasan Abdel-rahman, Ibrahim Habash

Abstract


Aim
To evaluate the exposure, knowledge and attitudes of graduating medical students at the University of Jordan towards the etiology and prevention of Early Childhood Caries (ECC).
Methods
An anonymous 21-item survey was distributed to final year medical students at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Jordan. The survey investigated exposure, knowledge and attitude regarding ECC, its etiology and prevention.
Results
Out of 186 questionnaires distributed, 118 were completed giving a response rate of 63%. The level of oral health knowledge was generally poor. Less than half of the students knew that brushing should begin with the appearance of the first baby tooth and only 15% knew that the first dental visit should be by the age of 12 months. More than half of the students were not familiar with fluoride varnish and its role in prevention (n=68) while 81% (n=96) did not know how fluoride varnish is applied.
Conclusion
The overall knowledge of graduating medical students at the University of Jordan about ECC etiology and prevention was poor. It is very important to improve the ability of medical students to diagnose caries, understand its etiology and give appropriate advice on its prevention

Keywords


Medical students’ knowledge, Early Childhood Caries, Caries prevention

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