An Application of the Protection Motivation Theory on Primary Tooth Decay Prevention Through Preschool Children Parents at Mueang District, Nakhonratchasima Province*

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Theerawut Thammakun
Malinee Somphobcharoen
Tharadol Kengganpanich
Mondha Kengganpanich


This study was a quasi-experimental research. The objective was to study the effectiveness of an
application of Protection Motivation Theory to primary tooth decay prevention through the of parents preschool
children and child attendants in Mueang District, Nakhonratchasima province, Thailand. Two groups were
recruited: an experimental group consisting of 43 parents and 43 preschool children, and a control group
consisting of 50 parents and 50 preschool children, with 5 child attendants in each group. The health education
program had a duration of 8 weeks and consisted of: workshop activities for village health volunteers, parents,
and child attendants; media and personal communication; group discussion; dental health activities in the child
development center; child observation and behavioral stimulation through attendants; monitoring and recording
behaviors of primary tooth decay prevention through parents; and surveying about cleanliness of oral cavities
in preschool children. Data were collected by using a parents’ interview form, a child attendant questionnaire,
a parental behaviors observation form, an evaluation form on tooth brushing skill for children, and a record form
on cleanliness of preschool children’s oral cavities. Data were analyzed by statistical methods to find the
percentages, means, standard deviations, paired t-tests, and independent t-tests.
The study revealed that the means of the experimental group on perceived severity, perceived probability, selfefficacy, response efficacy, and behavior for primary tooth decay prevention through parents were significantly higher
than in both the pre experiment and the control group (p<0.05). For child attendants, the experimental group had higher
means than prior to the experiment, and slightly higher means than the control group. For tooth brushing skill for children,
parents in the experimental group had significantly higher means than the control group (p<0.001). For cleanliness of
preschool children’s oral cavities, it was found that both the experimental group and the control group had better means
post experiment than pre experiment with statistical significance (p<0.05). After the experiment, it was found that the
control group had a better mean score for cleanliness of preschool children’s oral cavities than the experimental group,
but statistically the difference was not significant .

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