Sources of Oral Health Information and its Relationship on Knowledge Among Indian Adolescents


  • Ramesh Nagarajappa
  • Debasruti Naik
  • Gayathri Ramesh


Adolescent, Dental Care, Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice


Objective: To assess the current level of oral health knowledge and identify information sources among adolescents in Bhubaneswar, India. Material and Methods: A cross-sectional examination was conducted among 1330 adolescents aged 13 to 15 years enrolled in 24 randomly selected government and private schools in Bhubaneswar. A specially designed self-administered questionnaire was used to collect the responses. Chi-square test with a level of significance set at 5% was used for statistical analysis. Results: Parents (55%) followed by media (18%) were the major sources of oral health information among the study population, which was statistically not significant in relation to gender and school type. Many subjects (95.3%) perceived sweets could cause tooth decay; however, this was statistically significant only among school type (p<0.05). Around (45%) knew about fluoride and only 36% properly identified fluoride's action as preventing cavities. This was statistically significant among both gender and school type (p<0.05). Seventy-five percent of students effectively distinguished gum disease symptoms, which was significant only with gender (p<0.05). Around 55% identified that oral habits have an influence on oral health, which showed significance among gender (p<0.05). Conclusion: Children oral health knowledge was not satisfactory, highlighting the need to utilize parents, schoolteachers and media to provide oral health education. It’s essential for designing and implementing a person-centered care model in dentistry.


Sallis JF, Nader PR. Family Determinants of Health Behaviours. In: Gochman DS (Editor). Health Behaviour - Emerging Research Perspectives. New York: Plenum Press, 1988:107-124.

Petersen PE, Danila I, Samoila A. Oral health behaviour knowledge, and attitudes of children, mothers and schoolteachers in Romania in 1993. Acta Odontol Scand 1995; 53(6):363-8.

Al-Tamimi S, Petersen PE. Oral health situation of schoolchildren, mothers and schoolteachers in Saudi Arabia. Int Dent J 1998; 48(3):180-6.

Petersen PE, Esheng Z. Dental caries and oral health behaviour situation of children, mothers and schoolteachers in Wohan, Peoples Republic of China. Int Dent J 1998; 48(3):210-6.

Kickbusch I. Life-styles and health. Soc Sci Med 1986; 22(2):117-24.

Davies RM, Davies GM, Ellwood RP. Prevention. Part 4: Toothbrushing: what advice should be given to patients? Br Dent J 2003; 195(3):135-41.

Sham ASK, Cheung LK, Jin LJ, Corbet EF. The effects of tobacco use on oral health. Hong Kong Med J 2003; 9(4):271-7.

Deinzer R, Micheelis W, Granrath N, Hoffmann T. More to learn about: periodontitis-related knowledge and its relationship with periodontal health behaviour. J Clin Periodontol 2009; 36(9):756-64.

Ostberg AL, Halling A, Lindblad U. Gender differences in knowledge, attitude, behavior and perceived oral health among adolescents. Acta Odontol Scand 1999; 57(4):231-6.

Harada S, Akhter R, Kurita K, Mori M, Hoshikoshi M. Tamashiro H, et al. Relationships between lifestyle and dental health behaviors in a rural population in Japan. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol 2005; 33(1):17-24.

Genco RJ, Ho AW, Grossi SG, Dunford RG, Tedesco LA. Relationship of stress, distress and inadequate coping behaviors to periodontal disease. J Periodontol 1999; 70(7):711-23.

Aleksejuniené J, Holst D, Eriksen HM, Gjermo P. Psychosocial stress, lifestyle and periodontal health. J Clin Periodontol 2002; 29(4):326-35.

Paulander J, Axelsson P, Lindhe J. Association between level of education and oral health status in 35-, 50-, 65- and 75-year-olds. J Clin Periodontol 2003; 30(8):697-704.

Cronin AJ, Claffey N, Stassen LF. Who is at risk? Periodontal disease risk analysis made accessible for the general dental practitioner. Br Dent J 2008; 205(3):131-7.

Elyasi M, Abreu LG, Badri P, Saltaji H, Flores-Mir C, Amin M. Impact of sense of coherence on oral health behaviors: a systematic review. PLoS One 2015; 10(8):e0133918.

Mizutani S, Ekuni D, Furuta M, Tomofuji T, Irie K, Azuma T, et al. Effects of self-efficacy on oral health behaviours and gingival health in university students aged 18- or 19-years-old. J Clin Periodontol 2012; 39(9):844-9.

Smyth E, Caamano F, Fernández-Riveiro P. Oral health knowledge, attitudes and practice in 12-year-old schoolchildren. Med Oral Patol Oral Cir Bucal 2007; 12(8):E614-20.

Al‑Omiri MK, Al‑Wahadni AM, Saeed KN. Oral health attitudes, knowledge, and behavior among school children in North Jordan. J Dent Educ 2006; 70(2):179-87.

d'Almeida HB, Kagami N, Maki Y, Takaesu Y. Self-reported oral hygiene habits, health knowledge, and sources of oral health information in a group of Japanese junior high school students. Bull Tokyo Dent Coll 1997; 38(2):123-31.

Iwamoto A, Ishikawa Y, Yagi M, Ohuchi A, Sato T, Fukai K, et al. Changing patterns of behavior related to oral health in dental health examination program for adults that gives priority to risk-funding and health-guidance. J Dent Hlth 2012; 62(1):33-40.

Saengtipbovorn S, Taneepanichskul S. Effectiveness of lifestyle change plus dental care (LCDC) program on improving glycemic and periodontal status in the elderly with type 2 diabetes. BMC Oral Health 2014; 14:72.

Lang WP, Faja BW, Woolfolk MW, Glasrud PH, Frazier PJ. Elementary school teachers’ knowledge and attitudes about oral health. J Dent Res 1987; 66(Spec Iss):299.

Woolfolk MW, Lang WP, Faja BW. Oral health knowledge and sources of information among elementary schoolchildren. J Public Health Dent 1989; 49(1):39-43.

Vignarajah S. Oral health knowledge and behaviours and barriers to dental attendance of school children and adolescents in the Caribbean Island of Antigua. Int Dent J 1997; 47(3):167-72.

Attaullah, Khan M, Khan AA. Oral health related knowledge, attitude and practices among patients-a study. Pak Oral Dent J 2010; 30(1):186-91.

Bener A, Al Darwish MS, Tewfik I, Hoffmann GF. The impact of dietary and lifestyle factors on the risk of dental caries among young children in Qatar. J Egypt Public Health Assoc 2013; 88(2):67-73.

Al-Sadhan S. Dental caries prevalence among 12-14 year-old schoolchildren in Riyadh: a 14 year follow-up study of the oral health survey of Saudi Arabia phase I. Saudi Dent J 2006; 18:2-7.

Sa’adu L, Musa OI, Abu-Saeed K, Abu-Saeed MB. Knowledge and practices on oral health among junior secondary school students in Ilorin west local government area of Nigeria. E J Dent 2012; 2(2):170-5.

Lee H, Chalmers NI, Brow A, Boynes S, Monopoli M, Doherty M, et al. Person-centered care model in dentistry. BMC Oral Health 2018; 18(1):198.

Mirza BAQ, Syed A, Izhar F, Khan AA. Oral health attitudes, knowledge, and behavior amongst high and low socioeconomic school going children in Lahore, Pakistan. Pak Oral Dent J 2011; 31(2):396-401.

Cheah WL, Tay SP, Chai SC, Bong CS, Luqmanul HB, Zhuleikha BJ. Oral health knowledge, attitude and practice among secondary school students in Kuching, Sarawak. Arch Orofac Sci 2010; 5(1):9-16.

Priya M, Devdas K, Amarlal D, Venkatachalapathy A. Oral health attitudes, knowledge and practice among school children in Chennai, India. J Educ Ethics Dent 2013; 3(1):26-33.

Zhu L, Petersen PE, Wang HY, Bian JY, Zhang BX. Oral health knowledge, attitudes and behaviour of children and adolescents in China. Int Dent J 2003; 53(5):289-98.

Al-Ansari JM, Al-Jairan LY, Gillespie GM. Dietary habits of the primary to secondary school population and implications for oral health. J Allied Health 2006; 35(2):75-80.

Wyne AH, Chohan AN, Al-Abdulsalam Z, Al-Qedrah A, Al-Qahtani S. Oral health knowledge and sources of information among male secondary school children in Riyadh. Saudi Dent J 2005; 17(3):140-5.

Kuusela S, Honkala E, Kannas L, Tynjälä J, Wold B. Oral hygiene habits of 11-year-old schoolchildren in 22 European countries and Canada in 1993/1994. J Dent Res 1997; 76(9):1602-9.

Koivusilta L, Honkala S, Honkala E, Rimpelä A. Toothbrushing as part of the adolescent lifestyle predicts education level. J Dent Res 2003; 82(5):361-6.

Farsi JMA, Farghaly MM, Farsi N. Oral health knowledge, attitude and behaviour among Saudi school students in Jeddah city. J Dent 2004; 32(1):47-53.

Burt B, Pai S. Sugar consumption and caries risk: a systematic review. J Dent Educ 2001; 65(10):1017-23.

Ekman I, Swedberg K, Taft C, Lindseth A, Norberg A, Brink E, et al. Person-centered care - ready for prime time. Eur J Cardiovasc Nurs 2011; 10(4):248-51.




How to Cite

Nagarajappa, R. ., Naik, D. ., & Ramesh, G. . (2021). Sources of Oral Health Information and its Relationship on Knowledge Among Indian Adolescents. Pesquisa Brasileira Em Odontopediatria E Clínica Integrada, 21, e0099. Retrieved from



Original Articles