Oral Health Status and Treatment Need Among Institutionalised Hearing-Impaired and Blind Children and Young Adults in Udaipur, India. A Comparative Study
Aim: The aim of this study was to assess and compare the oral health status and the treatment needs of the institutionalised hearing-impaired and blind children and young adults in the city of Udaipur, Rajasthan, India.
Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted among 498 institutionalised hearing-impaired and blind people, aged 4 to 23 years, in the city of Udaipur, Rajasthan. The World Health Organization oral health assessment basic methods and form (1997) were used for data collection. Clinical examinations were carried out in the institute’s medical room or classroom by single examiner with the aid of a mouth mirror, explorer and Community Periodontal Index (CPI) probe under adequate natural light (Type III examination). The resulting data were entered into statistical software and analysed by applying the chi-square test, ANOVA, t-test and stepwise multiple linear regression analysis.
Results: The total mean DMFT (decayed-missing-filled teeth) and mean dft scores were 1.77 and 0.27 respectively. The largest component of DMFT was the D, with a mean of 1.49. The F component of 0.08 was very low. Mean DMFT/dft was greater among hearing-impaired than among blind subjects. Overall, 159 (32%) were periodontally healthy (CPI=0), 162 (32%) had shallow pockets (CPI=3) and 36 (7%) had deeper pockets (CPI=4). A higher percentage of the blind (87; 43%) than the hearing-impaired (72; 24%) subjects were periodontally healthy (CPI score=0). One-surface fillings were the most commonly provided form of past treatment.
Conclusion: The findings in this study highlight the lack of dental treatment for this group. Overall oral health status was poorer in the hearing-impaired than in the blind subjects.