Effectiveness of a School Oral Health Education Program in Yangon, Myanmar
Interventions in Pediatric Dentistry Open Access Journal
Aim: We evaluated the effectiveness of oral health education in terms of oral health literacy, knowledge, behaviors, and oral health status among middle school students in Yangon, Myanmar. Materials and methods: This 1-year study enrolled 10-to 11-year-old students. At baseline, a dentist provided health education to group A (n=247), and peer group leaders reinforced it. Group B (n=195) received no education program. After 6 months, the dentist provided education to both groups, and classroom
... ps, and classroom teachers reinforced it. Both groups received questionnaire surveys and oral examinations at baseline, 6 months, and 1 year. Results: There were no between-group differences at baseline. After 6 months, group A showed significant improvements in oral health literacy, knowledge, and behavior as well as reduction in dental plaque, gingivitis, and plaque bacterial levels. Group B only showed improved brushing and mouth rinsing behaviors. After 1 year, all items were significantly improved in both groups, although sweet snack/drink consumption behaviors remained unchanged and dental caries increased. At 1 year, group differences were not significant. Conclusion: Oral health education is effective in improving oral hygiene, decreasing gingivitis, and reducing plaque bacteria levels by improving oral health literacy, knowledge, and behaviors. However, eating behaviors and dental caries were difficult to change within 1 year.