Factors Associated with Awareness of Dental Care Services among a Population of Adults in Ondo City, Nigeria



Objective: To assess the factors associated with awareness of dental care services among adult residents of a sub-urban community in Nigeria.

Methods: This pilot study, cross-sectional in design was conducted among 263 adult residents attending a dental outreach programme in Ondo city, Nigeria. Data for the study was collected with a pretested structured questionnaire and by oral examination. Data obtained was analyzed with SPSS version 21.

Results: The age of the participants ranged from 17 – 90 years, there were 159 (60.5%) males and 169 (64.3%) had tertiary education. Many 232 (88.2%) were aware of orthodox dental care services prior to the study. The main sources of awareness were social media 67 (28.9%) and friends 58 (25.0%). Only 113 (43.0%) had consulted a dentist. A total of 107 (40.7%) of the participants had good oral hygiene, 135 (51.3%) had fair oral hygiene while 21 (8.0%) had poor oral hygiene. The prevalence of dental caries was 28.5%. A higher proportion of those who had tertiary education were aware of dentistry as a component of health care compared to those with secondary and primary education (94.1% vs 84.6% vs 69.0%, X2 = 21.084, p < 0.001). There was no significant association between awareness of dental care services and oral health status.

Conclusion: Awareness of dental care services among adult residents in Ondo city was high, although it did not reflect on their oral health status and less than half of those aware had consulted the dentist. It was however associated with higher educational qualification.