Document Type: Original Article(s)
Associate Professor, Department of Community Health and Primary Care, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Akoka, Nigeria
Department of Community Health and Primary Care, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Akoka, Nigeria
BACKGROUND AND AIM: Oral health knowledge and oral health seeking behavior among people living with human immunodeficiency virus infection and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) (PLWHA) have been found to be very low. The importance of education to improve awareness and oral health practices cannot be overemphasized. The study determined the level of awareness, perceived oral status and practices of oral health care among PLWHA attending Federal Medical Centre Abeokuta (FMCA), Nigeria.METHODS: This descriptive cross-sectional study recruited 204 participants using systematic random sampling technique. The self-designed, pre-tested questionnaire was interviewer-administered by trained research assistants in October 2014 for 4 weeks. All research protocols were strictly adhered to. The data were analyzed with SPSS, chi-square, ANOVA, Fischer’s exact test and P value was calculated.RESULTS: Out of 204 patients, 191, predominantly females 100 (52.4%); married 120 (62.8%), participated, with a response rate of 93.6%. The age range was 18-69 years with a mean of 37.64 ± 11.30 years. Oral health awareness was low 47 (24.6%), but 138 (72.3%) were aware of the role of fluoride toothpaste. Awareness on oral health was statistically significant with the level of education (P < 0.050). The majority 189 (99.0%); 168 (88.9%) used toothbrush, fluoride toothpaste, respectively, 69 (36.1%) brushed at least twice daily, none used dental floss, 14 (7.3%) had visited the dentist within 6 months, and 123 (64.4%) never received dental care.CONCLUSION: The limited awareness on oral health and its practices can be improved by oral health information and education among the respondents, and further help reduce the severity of some further complications.