Brazilian dental students and COVID-19: a survey on knowledge and perceptions
This study evaluated the knowledge and perception of Brazilian dental students about COVID-19 and the undergraduate clinical practice during the outbreak by a self-administered web-based questionnaire. A social network campaign on Instagram was raised to approach the reach population. The survey covered demographic and academic profile, general knowledge, preventive measures, and perception about the COVID-19. Descriptive statistics were used to identify frequencies and distributions of
... ibutions of variables, which were compared by type of institution and current year of enrollment using Chi-square or Fishers exact tests (alpha=0.05). A total of 833 valid responses were received over 10 days. Students were able to identify the incubation period, main symptoms, and contagious routes of the disease but struggled in recognizing the name of the virus responsible for the pandemics. Hand washing before and after a dental appointment with a patient (97.7%) followed by use of barriers to protect mucosa (97.2%) were the more frequently recognized measures to prevent COVID-19 spread in the dental office. As for the perception of COVID-19, 73.2% of the dental students perceive the disease as severe, while only 11.1% of them think that COVID-19 is severe only for people presenting risk factors. Dental students knowledge and perception were associated with the type of institution and year of enrollment. In summary, the dental students demonstrated an acceptable general knowledge about COVID-19, but dental schools will need to address gaps in knowledge and control measures and perceptions to ensure a safer return to practical activities.