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Journal of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry Official publication of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry
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 ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 35  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 216-222

Barriers to dental care for children with special needs: General dentists' perception in Kerala, India


Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, KMCT Dental College, Calicut, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
Sajeela Ismail
Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, KMCT Dental College, Calicut, Kerala
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/JISPPD.JISPPD_152_16

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Introduction: Special children are among the underserved dental patient groups around the globe. Oral health care for disabled children remain an unmet challenge. One out of two persons with a significant disability cannot find a professional resource to provide appropriate dental care. Identification of barriers can be the first step in addressing the deficiencies in dental care for such patients. Aim: To investigate the perception of dental practitioners in Kerala, India regarding the hurdles faced by them in providing dental care to Special Needs Children including the challenges faced by them. Materials and Method: 149 dental professionals were interviewed through a questionnaire for their perceived barriers to provide oral health care for children with special needs. Statistical analysis: The data was obtained and Chi-square test, Pearson correlation coefficient and logistic regression model were assessed using the SPSS version 20.0. All analyses were performed using a level of 0.05 for statistical significance. Results: Greatest barriers as perceived by the practitioners were their level of training and lack of motivation of caretakers. Significant association was found between experience of the dentist with the frequency with which they reported seeing children with special needs (p<0.05). Conclusion: Findings from this study provide a valid picture of barriers to access for children with special needs within general dental private practice system. Recommendations for amendment of undergraduate dental curriculum is made in order to equip future graduates to deal with this group of children better.






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