Awareness and knowledge of periodontal disease among Saudi primary school teachers in Aseer region
Background: The consequences of periodontal disease are not limited to the oral cavity. As schools are considered to be one of the principal systems in preventive oral health, teachers’ knowledge pertaining to the periodontal disease, their awareness with regard to its implications, and their role in increasing the awareness of the students regarding this disease comprises only one aspect with respect to the prevention of the periodontal disease. Therefore, the aim of this study is to investigate baseline awareness and knowledge of Saudi primary school teachers regarding the periodontal disease.
Methods: For this purpose, a questionnaire was distributed among the participants of the study.
Results: It was observed that 91.4% of the participants reported that the periodontal disease does not need any treatment, although 70% of the participants believed that it could result in tooth loss, and 95% considered the periodontal disease to be a preventable disease. Moreover, social media (44%) and TV ads (39%) were the main sources from where they acquired information about the periodontal disease.
Conclusions: Most participants have heard about the importance of periodontal health but are not sufficiently aware of its consequences and negative effects on their body. They are used to receiving information about periodontal diseases from non-dental clinics and unreliable sources. This creates misconceptions. Although the participants were keen to attend educational events on periodontal health, the lack of medical communication between the health practitioners and the general public is evident. Mostly, investigated areas and individuals do not have any educational means to be aware of periodontal health.