PERCEPTIONS OF PUBLIC AND PRIVATE SCHOOL STUDENTS OF LAHORE CANTT ABOUT DENTAL HEALTH
There is a lack of knowledge of healthy oral habits that are vital in preventing caries and periodontal diseases. These problems are prevalent worldwide, despite advances in oral health awareness programs. The objective of this study was to record perception of school going students from public and private sector regarding their oral hygiene practices and knowledge about oral health conditions.
A questionnaire-based survey was conducted on students from two public and two private sector schools of Lahore Cantt, randomly selected. Among the 255 participants, aged 6 to 15 years, 50.59% were from public schools and 49.41% from private schools. Statistically significant difference was noted (p-value =0.00) as 61.2% of the public schools students brushed twice daily compared to 34.9% of private school students. Tooth brush and toothpaste were the preferred oral hygiene regime, from both the public (92.2%) and private (86.5%) schools with no statistical difference. 68.2% of the students had no awareness about dental plaque among these significantly higher percentage of participants were from public schools (p-value = 0.01). Majority of the students had no knowledge about protection from bleeding gums, 70.5% belonging to public schools compared to 57.9% from private schools (p value = 0.011). Regular dental check-up every six months was lacking in both public and private school students, 4.6% and 12.7% respectively (p-value = 0.000).
The basic knowledge about recommended oral hygiene practices and understanding of common terms was lacking in both public and private school students. Overall public school students had comparatively better knowledge and practices compared to private school students of Cantt Lahore.