Assessment of Dental Problems and Self-esteem among School Children: A Cross-sectional Study
Dr. Sharin Neetal D’souza,
Assistant Professor, Department of Child Health Nursing, Yenepoya Nursing College, Yenepoya Deemed to be University, Mangalore, Karnataka, India.
Introduction: The transitional stage of a person’s physical and psychological development, known as school age, is strongly related to adolescence. An individual’s oral health significantly impacts their general health and happiness. Oral health is a crucial component of overall well-being and can affect one’s level of self-esteem. Even common dental conditions like dental trauma and untreated caries can have an impact on an individual’s self-esteem, which in turn can affect their quality of life.
Aim: To explore the dental problems and self-esteem of school-age children.
Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in selected schools of Mangaluru, Karnataka, India. A total of 86 school children aged between 10 and 15 years were included using a non probability purposive sampling technique. The study duration was eight months, from February 2021 to September 2021. A self-structured rating scale was employed to assess self-esteem, and a self-structured checklist was used to assess dental issues. Survey participants who scored higher than four on the checklist were invited to complete a self-esteem evaluation scale to gain further insights into their dental concerns. Data analysis was performed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 23.0, applying descriptive and inferential statistics to evaluate the collected data. The relationship and association between the concepts were examined using Karl Pearson’s correlation coefficient and the Chi-square test.
Results: According to the study’s findings, 75 (87.2%) school children had moderate self-esteem, while 11 (12.8%) had high self-esteem regarding dental issues. The majority of school children, 52 (60.5%), had moderate dental problems, while 23 (26.7%) had severe dental problems, and 11 (12.8%) had very severe dental problems. The results of the study also revealed a significant relationship between school-aged children’s dental issues and their sense of self-worth. The calculated p-values indicate that there was no significant association between self-esteem and demographic data. However, there was a significant association between dental problems and other demographic variables, such as family income per month.
Conclusion: Based on the present study’s findings, school-aged children experienced mild dental issues, and there was a substantial link between these issues and students’ self-esteem. Additionally, the study showed that there was no significant association between self-esteem and demographic data. However, a significant association was found between dental problems and various demographic variables, such as family income per month. Therefore, it is argued that each person’s self-esteem in relation to dental issues may differ.