Practice in Oral Health Care and Dental Caries Prevalence among the Village Health Volunteers in Warin Chamrap District, Ubon Ratchathani Province, Thailand
Keywords:Practice in oral healthcare, dental caries, village health volunteers
Improving dental health care is an important priority for Thailand. According to the 8th oral health survey in 2017 by Thai Bureau of Dental Health, the prevalence of dental caries was 91.8 % in a nationwide study of people 35-44 years old. The average number of decayed, missing, and filled tooth (dmft) was 6.6. Primary healthcare is a public health service that provides services at the subdistrict and village. Promoting oral and dental health is important to prevent dental caries, reduce the cost of treatment, and prevent loss of permanent teeth. The Village Health Volunteers (VHVs) play an important role in primary dental health care by leading changes in health behavior and by integrating public health work with local government organizations. This cross-sectional descriptive study aimed to study oral health care practices and the prevalence of dental caries among the village health volunteers in Warin Chamrap district, Ubon Ratchathani province. 155 VHVs were recruited in the Warin Chamrap district, Ubon Ratchathani province using a random sampling method. Data were collected by the questionnaires and dental health status examinations form. The results showed that 69.68% of VHVs practiced oral health care at a moderate level (xˉ=2.99, S.D.=0.35). VHVs had an 80% prevalence of dental caries. The average number of dmft was 7.98, which is slightly higher than the Thai national average. The results of this study may be used for dental service planning and dental health promotion, and to encourage VHVs to be good models of oral health care.
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