Knowledge and Awareness of Nursing Professionals Posted in Pediatric Wards about Early Childhood Caries and Prevention

Ankita Chaudhary1, Vijay Prakash Mathur2
1 Peodontics and Preventive Dentistry, New Delhi, Delhi, India

Background:- Early childhood caries (ECC) has emerged as a global oral health problem among preschool children. It has been associated with several immediate consequences like pain, discomfort along-with long term issues as premature tooth loss and psychosocial problems. ECC has been associated with disturbances in growth & development and increased susceptibility to dental caries in permanent teeth.

ECC has multifactorial etiology and its effective prevention & management depends upon identification and control of these factors. It has also been emphasized that lifestyle changes play a prudent role in ECC prevention. The children suffering from any chronic systemic disease have to take medications in form of syrups over long periods of time. Additionally, the multiple health and survival issues lead to lesser importance given to oral hygiene and dental care. This further leads to high prevalence and increased severity of ECC as compared to other normal children. The role of nursing professionals in prevention of ECC in pre-school children and those suffering from chronic systemic diseases has not been studied much. It is assumed that, increasing their awareness about ECC, and its prevention methods, will result in better counselling of parents of such children. This may help in achieving life style changes in these children and resultant lesser susceptibility to caries.

Method: A questionnaire-based survey planned to evaluate the knowledge and awareness of nursing staff posted in pediatric wards about ECC.

Results: Final results are awaited

Conclusion: This study will help in evaluating the awareness regarding ECC and its prevention by nurses posted in a pediatric wards of a tertiary care hospital in India.

Ankita Chaudhary