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Table of Contents
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 17-19

Knowledge, attitude, and practices of gynecologists regarding perinatal oral health care in Navi Mumbai


Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, D. Y. Patil University School of Dentistry, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Date of Submission16-Feb-2020
Date of Acceptance26-Feb-2020
Date of Web Publication21-May-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Vrushali R Patil
9, Gandhar Society, near Mehta Hospital, Kulkarni Colony, Nashik 2, Maharashtra.
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/INJO.INJO_6_20

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  Abstract 

Introduction: This study aimed to assess knowledge, attitude, and practices among gynecologists regarding oral health care of expectant mothers in Navi Mumbai by using questionnaire. Materials and Methods: A total of 100 gynecologists were selected randomly, and a comprehensive questionnaire was distributed among them. Results: The result showed that majority of the gynecologists had good knowledge, attitude, and practices regarding oral health care. Conclusion: Gynecologist’s attitude and practices can be improved by oral health care–promoting strategies. Oral health care of expectant mother should be addressed by multi-professional approach. Perinatal oral health care should be provided by all gynecologists, and pediatric dentist should be a part of this team.

Keywords: Gynecologist, infant oral health, knowledge, perinatal oral health care


How to cite this article:
Patil VR, Naik S. Knowledge, attitude, and practices of gynecologists regarding perinatal oral health care in Navi Mumbai. Int J Oral Care Res 2020;8:17-9

How to cite this URL:
Patil VR, Naik S. Knowledge, attitude, and practices of gynecologists regarding perinatal oral health care in Navi Mumbai. Int J Oral Care Res [serial online] 2020 [cited 2020 Sep 24];8:17-9. Available from: http://www.ijocr.org/text.asp?2020/8/2/17/284678




  Introduction Top


Giving birth to the newborn is the most crucial and delicate phase of women’s life in which every stage of pregnancy gives rise to different issues and concerns. General health and well-being of expectant mother is essential during prenatal, perinatal, and postnatal period to restore good health in infant. Prenatal period is from conception to birth, perinatal is the period around the time of birth, beginning with the completion of 20th to 28th week of gestation to first to fourth week after birth, and postnatal period is after birth till sixth week.[1] Development of a tooth begins by sixth week of intrauterine life, after which it undergoes various phases of tooth development, till its eruption in oral cavity. Variations in amniotic fluid composition are caused by maternal diet, which further influences the activation of taste buds in newborn, thus affecting future food choices of the child. Any disturbance in mother’s health during this phase may directly affect the health of a newborn.[2]

Dental caries and periodontal health status are the most common oral health issues, which should be diagnosed and treated in expectant mother as they can give rise to adverse pregnancy outcomes. Association of maternal periodontal disease with preterm delivery and low-birth-weight babies has been established.[3],[4],[5] Dental caries causing bacteria, Streptococcus mutans, is transmitted from mother to child by vertical transmission.[6]

Pregnancy is the time when appropriate oral hygiene practices can be instilled in expectant mothers by counseling them regarding the importance of their own as well as infant’s oral hygiene. So, oral health education during this period is beneficial to prevent undesirable outcomes in mothers and to maintain good oral health in infants too. This can be achieved by prenatal counseling of expectant mothers as suggested by Nowak et al.[7]

Though oral health is an integral part of general health, oral diseases are often neglected because of lack of awareness. This negligence is due to lack of implementation not only by patients but also by primary health-care providers such as pediatricians, gynecologists, and general practitioners. Pregnancy is the period in which oral health care should be addressed by multi-professional approach and incorporated into comprehensive health-promoting strategies.[8],[9]

Gynecologists are the first ones among primary health-care providers involved in the assessment of women throughout their pregnancy so they are important to initiate oral health program along with dentists. Their knowledge, attitude, and practices regarding perinatal oral health care are essential to increase awareness in expectant mothers.

Therefore, this study was designed to assess knowledge, attitude, and practices of gynecologists practicing in Navi Mumbai regarding perinatal oral health care.


  Materials and Methods Top


This is cross-sectional survey of a study sample consisting of gynecologists of Navi Mumbai. A total of 100 gynecologists working in private sector were selected in the survey.

A pilot study was conducted on total 10% of sample size to check feasibility of the study and to validate the questionnaire.

A structured, closed-ended questionnaire was distributed among gynecologists personally and by Google forms. The responses were collected after a span of 1 week. The data collected were subjected to statistical analysis.


  Results Top


A total of 100 gynecologists responded to the questionnaire. [Table 1] shows the responses of gynecologists to the questionnaire showing knowledge, attitude, and practices regarding perinatal oral health care.
Table 1: Responses of gynecologists regarding perinatal oral health care

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Among the respondents, 22% gynecologists were younger than 40 years of age, 60% were between 40 and 50 years of age, and 18% were older than 50 years. It was found that 18% were males and 82% were females. According to the number of years of clinical practice, 20% gynecologists had less than 5 years of clinical experience, 50% had clinical experience between 5 and 10 years, and 30% had more than 10 years of clinical experience.


  Discussion Top


American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry emphasizes on the infant oral health care to build up a foundation for preventive oral health-care strategies.[10] Primary health-care providers, especially gynecologists, should be aware of consequences of untreated oral diseases to reduce complications during this crucial phase. As gynecologists are the first to see the expectant mothers, they may provide screening services for oral diseases, advice to seek dental care, and refer those who are in need for it.

Questionnaire-based survey gathers the collective information about the knowledge and attitude of gynecologists regarding oral health of expectant mothers and whether they are actually able to impart this awareness in their clinical practice.

In our study, gynecologists in the age-group of 40–50 years have better knowledge than others. This is similar to a study conducted by Anand et al.[11]

In this study, only 67% gynecologists were aware of the fact that the prevalence of dental caries is directly related to child’s caries status, as many of them were not aware of the vertical transmission of Streptococcus mutans—the main pathogenic organism responsible for caries development.

Most of the gynecologists showed good knowledge about the relation between periodontal disease and low-birth-weight babies, complications associated with forceps delivery, safe period for dental treatment, nutritional supplements for teeth, adverse effects of antibiotics, and effect of maternal alcohol consumption, smoking, and radiation exposure. This is similar to the findings of a study by Shah et al.[12]

Knowledge about the relation of periodontal diseases with low-birth-weight babies was found to be good (98%), which was very less (38.09%) in a study by Acharya et al.[13] and was 55% in a study by Shenoy et al.[14] Of the total gynecologists, 80% found that examination of the oral cavity should be a part of general examination as others may not find oral health to affect general health, and perinatal oral health counseling was found to be less important as only 75% responded positively to this aspect.

As per our findings, 83% were found to refer to dental specialists, which is more than the findings of a study by Subramaniam et al.[15] and Anand et al.[11] Many gynecologists did not focus on diet counseling specific to oral health, as most of them were not aware about the cariogenic potential of commonly consumed food.


  Conclusion Top


Gynecologists practicing in Navi Mumbai have shown good knowledge, attitude, and practices regarding oral diseases in expectant mothers; however, their knowledge about vertical transmission and diet causing dental caries was comparatively low, which can be improved by oral health care–promoting strategies. Oral health care of expectant mother should be addressed by multi-professional approach. Perinatal oral health care should be provided by all gynecologists, and pediatric dentist should be part of this team.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
Singh M. Care of the newborn; 2010, p. 7. Edition 7. ISBN 9788170820536.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Bachmanov AA, Bosak NP, Lin C, Matsumoto I, Ohmoto M, Reed DR, et al. Genetics of taste receptors. Curr Pharm Des2014;20:2669-83.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Scannapieco FA, Bush RB, Paju S. Periodontal disease as a risk factor for adverse pregnancy outcomes. A systematic review. Ann Periodontol 2003;8:70-8.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Dasanayake AP. Poor periodontal health of the pregnant woman as a risk factor for low birth weight. Ann Periodontol 1998;3: 206-12.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Offenbacher S, Katz V, Fertik G, Collins J, Boyd D, Maynor G, et al. Periodontal infection as a possible risk factor for preterm low birth weight. J Periodontol 1996;67:1103-13.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.
Li Y, Caufield PW, Dasanayake AP, Wiener HW, Vermund SH. Mode of delivery and other maternal factors influence the acquisition of Streptococcus mutans in infants. J Dent Res 2005;84:806-11.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Nowak AJ, Casamassimo PS, McTigue DJ. Prevention of dental disease from nine months in utero to eruption of the first tooth. J Am Soc Prev Dent 1976;6:6-12.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Petersen PE. Global policy for improvement of oral health in the 21st century—Implications to oral health research of World Health Assembly 2007, World Health Organization. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol 2009;37:1-8.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Ramirez JH, Arce R, Contreras A. Why must physicians know about oral diseases? Teach Learn Med 2010;22:148-55.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
10.
American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) guidelines on perinatal oral health care. Reference Manual 2011;37:15-6.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Anand A, Ranvijay, Tanwar AS, Sharma S. Knowledge, attitude and practices among gynecologists regarding oral health of pregnant woman’s of Patna, Bihar. Int J Comtemp Med Res 2017;4:1093-5.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Shah HG, Ajithkrishnan C, Sodani V, Chaudhary NJ. Knowledge, attitude and practices among gynecologists regarding oral health of expectant mothers of Vadodara City, Gujarat. Int J Health Sci (Qassim) 2013;7:136-40.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
Acharya S, Acharya S, Mahapatra U. Knowledge, attitudes, and practices among gynecologists regarding oral health of expectant mothers and infants in Bhubaneswar City, Odisha. J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent 2018;36:240-3.  Back to cited text no. 13
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14.
Shenoy RP, Nayak DG, Sequeira PS. Periodontal disease as a risk factor in pre-term low birth weight—An assessment of gynecologists’ knowledge: A pilot study. Indian J Dent Res 2009;20: 13-6.  Back to cited text no. 14
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
15.
Subramaniam P, Babu KL, Babu PS, Naidu P. Oral health care of children: Gynecologists and pediatricians’ perspective. J Clin Pediatr Dent 2008;32:253-8.  Back to cited text no. 15
    



 
 
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