Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research, ISSN - 0973 - 709X

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Dr Mohan Z Mani

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Believers Church Medical College,
Thiruvalla, Kerala
On Sep 2018




Prof. Somashekhar Nimbalkar

"Over the last few years, we have published our research regularly in Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research. Having published in more than 20 high impact journals over the last five years including several high impact ones and reviewing articles for even more journals across my fields of interest, we value our published work in JCDR for their high standards in publishing scientific articles. The ease of submission, the rapid reviews in under a month, the high quality of their reviewers and keen attention to the final process of proofs and publication, ensure that there are no mistakes in the final article. We have been asked clarifications on several occasions and have been happy to provide them and it exemplifies the commitment to quality of the team at JCDR."



Prof. Somashekhar Nimbalkar
Head, Department of Pediatrics, Pramukhswami Medical College, Karamsad
Chairman, Research Group, Charutar Arogya Mandal, Karamsad
National Joint Coordinator - Advanced IAP NNF NRP Program
Ex-Member, Governing Body, National Neonatology Forum, New Delhi
Ex-President - National Neonatology Forum Gujarat State Chapter
Department of Pediatrics, Pramukhswami Medical College, Karamsad, Anand, Gujarat.
On Sep 2018




Dr. Kalyani R

"Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research is at present a well-known Indian originated scientific journal which started with a humble beginning. I have been associated with this journal since many years. I appreciate the Editor, Dr. Hemant Jain, for his constant effort in bringing up this journal to the present status right from the scratch. The journal is multidisciplinary. It encourages in publishing the scientific articles from postgraduates and also the beginners who start their career. At the same time the journal also caters for the high quality articles from specialty and super-specialty researchers. Hence it provides a platform for the scientist and researchers to publish. The other aspect of it is, the readers get the information regarding the most recent developments in science which can be used for teaching, research, treating patients and to some extent take preventive measures against certain diseases. The journal is contributing immensely to the society at national and international level."



Dr Kalyani R
Professor and Head
Department of Pathology
Sri Devaraj Urs Medical College
Sri Devaraj Urs Academy of Higher Education and Research , Kolar, Karnataka
On Sep 2018




Dr. Saumya Navit

"As a peer-reviewed journal, the Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research provides an opportunity to researchers, scientists and budding professionals to explore the developments in the field of medicine and dentistry and their varied specialities, thus extending our view on biological diversities of living species in relation to medicine.
‘Knowledge is treasure of a wise man.’ The free access of this journal provides an immense scope of learning for the both the old and the young in field of medicine and dentistry as well. The multidisciplinary nature of the journal makes it a better platform to absorb all that is being researched and developed. The publication process is systematic and professional. Online submission, publication and peer reviewing makes it a user-friendly journal.
As an experienced dentist and an academician, I proudly recommend this journal to the dental fraternity as a good quality open access platform for rapid communication of their cutting-edge research progress and discovery.
I wish JCDR a great success and I hope that journal will soar higher with the passing time."



Dr Saumya Navit
Professor and Head
Department of Pediatric Dentistry
Saraswati Dental College
Lucknow
On Sep 2018




Dr. Arunava Biswas

"My sincere attachment with JCDR as an author as well as reviewer is a learning experience . Their systematic approach in publication of article in various categories is really praiseworthy.
Their prompt and timely response to review's query and the manner in which they have set the reviewing process helps in extracting the best possible scientific writings for publication.
It's a honour and pride to be a part of the JCDR team. My very best wishes to JCDR and hope it will sparkle up above the sky as a high indexed journal in near future."



Dr. Arunava Biswas
MD, DM (Clinical Pharmacology)
Assistant Professor
Department of Pharmacology
Calcutta National Medical College & Hospital , Kolkata




Dr. C.S. Ramesh Babu
" Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research (JCDR) is a multi-specialty medical and dental journal publishing high quality research articles in almost all branches of medicine. The quality of printing of figures and tables is excellent and comparable to any International journal. An added advantage is nominal publication charges and monthly issue of the journal and more chances of an article being accepted for publication. Moreover being a multi-specialty journal an article concerning a particular specialty has a wider reach of readers of other related specialties also. As an author and reviewer for several years I find this Journal most suitable and highly recommend this Journal."
Best regards,
C.S. Ramesh Babu,
Associate Professor of Anatomy,
Muzaffarnagar Medical College,
Muzaffarnagar.
On Aug 2018




Dr. Arundhathi. S
"Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research (JCDR) is a reputed peer reviewed journal and is constantly involved in publishing high quality research articles related to medicine. Its been a great pleasure to be associated with this esteemed journal as a reviewer and as an author for a couple of years. The editorial board consists of many dedicated and reputed experts as its members and they are doing an appreciable work in guiding budding researchers. JCDR is doing a commendable job in scientific research by promoting excellent quality research & review articles and case reports & series. The reviewers provide appropriate suggestions that improve the quality of articles. I strongly recommend my fraternity to encourage JCDR by contributing their valuable research work in this widely accepted, user friendly journal. I hope my collaboration with JCDR will continue for a long time".



Dr. Arundhathi. S
MBBS, MD (Pathology),
Sanjay Gandhi institute of trauma and orthopedics,
Bengaluru.
On Aug 2018




Dr. Mamta Gupta,
"It gives me great pleasure to be associated with JCDR, since last 2-3 years. Since then I have authored, co-authored and reviewed about 25 articles in JCDR. I thank JCDR for giving me an opportunity to improve my own skills as an author and a reviewer.
It 's a multispecialty journal, publishing high quality articles. It gives a platform to the authors to publish their research work which can be available for everyone across the globe to read. The best thing about JCDR is that the full articles of all medical specialties are available as pdf/html for reading free of cost or without institutional subscription, which is not there for other journals. For those who have problem in writing manuscript or do statistical work, JCDR comes for their rescue.
The journal has a monthly publication and the articles are published quite fast. In time compared to other journals. The on-line first publication is also a great advantage and facility to review one's own articles before going to print. The response to any query and permission if required, is quite fast; this is quite commendable. I have a very good experience about seeking quick permission for quoting a photograph (Fig.) from a JCDR article for my chapter authored in an E book. I never thought it would be so easy. No hassles.
Reviewing articles is no less a pain staking process and requires in depth perception, knowledge about the topic for review. It requires time and concentration, yet I enjoy doing it. The JCDR website especially for the reviewers is quite user friendly. My suggestions for improving the journal is, more strict review process, so that only high quality articles are published. I find a a good number of articles in Obst. Gynae, hence, a new journal for this specialty titled JCDR-OG can be started. May be a bimonthly or quarterly publication to begin with. Only selected articles should find a place in it.
An yearly reward for the best article authored can also incentivize the authors. Though the process of finding the best article will be not be very easy. I do not know how reviewing process can be improved. If an article is being reviewed by two reviewers, then opinion of one can be communicated to the other or the final opinion of the editor can be communicated to the reviewer if requested for. This will help one’s reviewing skills.
My best wishes to Dr. Hemant Jain and all the editorial staff of JCDR for their untiring efforts to bring out this journal. I strongly recommend medical fraternity to publish their valuable research work in this esteemed journal, JCDR".



Dr. Mamta Gupta
Consultant
(Ex HOD Obs &Gynae, Hindu Rao Hospital and associated NDMC Medical College, Delhi)
Aug 2018




Dr. Rajendra Kumar Ghritlaharey

"I wish to thank Dr. Hemant Jain, Editor-in-Chief Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research (JCDR), for asking me to write up few words.
Writing is the representation of language in a textual medium i e; into the words and sentences on paper. Quality medical manuscript writing in particular, demands not only a high-quality research, but also requires accurate and concise communication of findings and conclusions, with adherence to particular journal guidelines. In medical field whether working in teaching, private, or in corporate institution, everyone wants to excel in his / her own field and get recognised by making manuscripts publication.


Authors are the souls of any journal, and deserve much respect. To publish a journal manuscripts are needed from authors. Authors have a great responsibility for producing facts of their work in terms of number and results truthfully and an individual honesty is expected from authors in this regards. Both ways its true "No authors-No manuscripts-No journals" and "No journals–No manuscripts–No authors". Reviewing a manuscript is also a very responsible and important task of any peer-reviewed journal and to be taken seriously. It needs knowledge on the subject, sincerity, honesty and determination. Although the process of reviewing a manuscript is a time consuming task butit is expected to give one's best remarks within the time frame of the journal.
Salient features of the JCDR: It is a biomedical, multidisciplinary (including all medical and dental specialities), e-journal, with wide scope and extensive author support. At the same time, a free text of manuscript is available in HTML and PDF format. There is fast growing authorship and readership with JCDR as this can be judged by the number of articles published in it i e; in Feb 2007 of its first issue, it contained 5 articles only, and now in its recent volume published in April 2011, it contained 67 manuscripts. This e-journal is fulfilling the commitments and objectives sincerely, (as stated by Editor-in-chief in his preface to first edition) i e; to encourage physicians through the internet, especially from the developing countries who witness a spectrum of disease and acquire a wealth of knowledge to publish their experiences to benefit the medical community in patients care. I also feel that many of us have work of substance, newer ideas, adequate clinical materials but poor in medical writing and hesitation to submit the work and need help. JCDR provides authors help in this regards.
Timely publication of journal: Publication of manuscripts and bringing out the issue in time is one of the positive aspects of JCDR and is possible with strong support team in terms of peer reviewers, proof reading, language check, computer operators, etc. This is one of the great reasons for authors to submit their work with JCDR. Another best part of JCDR is "Online first Publications" facilities available for the authors. This facility not only provides the prompt publications of the manuscripts but at the same time also early availability of the manuscripts for the readers.
Indexation and online availability: Indexation transforms the journal in some sense from its local ownership to the worldwide professional community and to the public.JCDR is indexed with Embase & EMbiology, Google Scholar, Index Copernicus, Chemical Abstracts Service, Journal seek Database, Indian Science Abstracts, to name few of them. Manuscriptspublished in JCDR are available on major search engines ie; google, yahoo, msn.
In the era of fast growing newer technologies, and in computer and internet friendly environment the manuscripts preparation, submission, review, revision, etc and all can be done and checked with a click from all corer of the world, at any time. Of course there is always a scope for improvement in every field and none is perfect. To progress, one needs to identify the areas of one's weakness and to strengthen them.
It is well said that "happy beginning is half done" and it fits perfectly with JCDR. It has grown considerably and I feel it has already grown up from its infancy to adolescence, achieving the status of standard online e-journal form Indian continent since its inception in Feb 2007. This had been made possible due to the efforts and the hard work put in it. The way the JCDR is improving with every new volume, with good quality original manuscripts, makes it a quality journal for readers. I must thank and congratulate Dr Hemant Jain, Editor-in-Chief JCDR and his team for their sincere efforts, dedication, and determination for making JCDR a fast growing journal.
Every one of us: authors, reviewers, editors, and publisher are responsible for enhancing the stature of the journal. I wish for a great success for JCDR."



Thanking you
With sincere regards
Dr. Rajendra Kumar Ghritlaharey, M.S., M. Ch., FAIS
Associate Professor,
Department of Paediatric Surgery, Gandhi Medical College & Associated
Kamla Nehru & Hamidia Hospitals Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh 462 001 (India)
E-mail: drrajendrak1@rediffmail.com
On May 11,2011




Dr. Shankar P.R.

"On looking back through my Gmail archives after being requested by the journal to write a short editorial about my experiences of publishing with the Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research (JCDR), I came across an e-mail from Dr. Hemant Jain, Editor, in March 2007, which introduced the new electronic journal. The main features of the journal which were outlined in the e-mail were extensive author support, cash rewards, the peer review process, and other salient features of the journal.
Over a span of over four years, we (I and my colleagues) have published around 25 articles in the journal. In this editorial, I plan to briefly discuss my experiences of publishing with JCDR and the strengths of the journal and to finally address the areas for improvement.
My experiences of publishing with JCDR: Overall, my experiences of publishing withJCDR have been positive. The best point about the journal is that it responds to queries from the author. This may seem to be simple and not too much to ask for, but unfortunately, many journals in the subcontinent and from many developing countries do not respond or they respond with a long delay to the queries from the authors 1. The reasons could be many, including lack of optimal secretarial and other support. Another problem with many journals is the slowness of the review process. Editorial processing and peer review can take anywhere between a year to two years with some journals. Also, some journals do not keep the contributors informed about the progress of the review process. Due to the long review process, the articles can lose their relevance and topicality. A major benefit with JCDR is the timeliness and promptness of its response. In Dr Jain's e-mail which was sent to me in 2007, before the introduction of the Pre-publishing system, he had stated that he had received my submission and that he would get back to me within seven days and he did!
Most of the manuscripts are published within 3 to 4 months of their submission if they are found to be suitable after the review process. JCDR is published bimonthly and the accepted articles were usually published in the next issue. Recently, due to the increased volume of the submissions, the review process has become slower and it ?? Section can take from 4 to 6 months for the articles to be reviewed. The journal has an extensive author support system and it has recently introduced a paid expedited review process. The journal also mentions the average time for processing the manuscript under different submission systems - regular submission and expedited review.
Strengths of the journal: The journal has an online first facility in which the accepted manuscripts may be published on the website before being included in a regular issue of the journal. This cuts down the time between their acceptance and the publication. The journal is indexed in many databases, though not in PubMed. The editorial board should now take steps to index the journal in PubMed. The journal has a system of notifying readers through e-mail when a new issue is released. Also, the articles are available in both the HTML and the PDF formats. I especially like the new and colorful page format of the journal. Also, the access statistics of the articles are available. The prepublication and the manuscript tracking system are also helpful for the authors.
Areas for improvement: In certain cases, I felt that the peer review process of the manuscripts was not up to international standards and that it should be strengthened. Also, the number of manuscripts in an issue is high and it may be difficult for readers to go through all of them. The journal can consider tightening of the peer review process and increasing the quality standards for the acceptance of the manuscripts. I faced occasional problems with the online manuscript submission (Pre-publishing) system, which have to be addressed.
Overall, the publishing process with JCDR has been smooth, quick and relatively hassle free and I can recommend other authors to consider the journal as an outlet for their work."



Dr. P. Ravi Shankar
KIST Medical College, P.O. Box 14142, Kathmandu, Nepal.
E-mail: ravi.dr.shankar@gmail.com
On April 2011
Anuradha

Dear team JCDR, I would like to thank you for the very professional and polite service provided by everyone at JCDR. While i have been in the field of writing and editing for sometime, this has been my first attempt in publishing a scientific paper.Thank you for hand-holding me through the process.


Dr. Anuradha
E-mail: anuradha2nittur@gmail.com
On Jan 2020

Important Notice

Original article / research
Year : 2022 | Month : June | Volume : 16 | Issue : 6 | Page : ZC61 - ZC65 Full Version

Social Media Use in Dental Practice by Dental Practitioners of India: A Cross-sectional Survey


Published: June 1, 2022 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.7860/JCDR/2022/56404.16533
Amol Jamkhande, Anunay Bhaskarrao Pangarikar, Mahesh Ravindra Khairnar, Neelam Gavali, Yojana Patil, Umesh Wadgave

1. Associate Professor, Department of Public Health Dentistry, Bharati Vidyapeeth (Deemed to be University) Dental College and Hospital, Pune, Maharashtra, India. 2. Associate Professor, Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, ESIC Dental College, Kalburgi, Gulbarnga, Karnataka, India. 3. Assistant Professor, Department of Public Health Dentistry, Faculty of Dental Sciences, IMS, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India. 4. Assistant Professor, Department of Periodontics, Bharati Vidyapeeth (Deemed to be University) Dental College & Hospital, Pune, Maharashtra, India. 5. Professor, Department of Public Health Dentistry, Tatyasaheb Kore Dental College and Research Center, Kolhapur, Maharashtra, India. 6. Dental Surgeon, Wadgave Dental Home, Bidar, Karnataka, India.

Correspondence Address :
Dr. Anunay Bhaskarrao Pangarikar,
ESIC Dental College, Kalburgi, Gulbarnga, Karnataka, India.
E-mail: dr.pangarikarb@gmail.com

Abstract

Introduction: In recent years, social media use has been increased by healthcare professionals (HCPs) in their healthcare practice and it has emerged as a new platform for disseminationof knowledge, information exchange, and interpersonal communication.

Aim: This study was conducted with an aim to assess the use of social media in dental practice among dental practitioners in India.

Materials and Methods: This cross-sectional survey was conducted from October 2019 to March 2020 at Bharati Vidyapeeth (Deemed to be University) Dental College and Hospital, Pune, Maharashtra, India by implementing a 15-item questionnaire to 36218 dental practitioners in India registered with Indian Dental Association through an Electronic Survey Application. The questionnaire consisted of a section on demographic details of the participants which included their age, gender, type and number of years of practice. Second section consisted of items about the use of social media in dental practice and one open ended question on the topic. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistics and comparisons were made using a chi-square test. The Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 20.0 was used for data analysis. Level of significance was kept at 5%.

Results: A total of 3180 dentists responded and returned the filled questionnaire. Social media was used by 1980 (62.3%) of dentists in their practice and the most commonly used platform was WhatsApp 1650 (83.3% of social media users). Most common reason for using social media in dental practice was for learning new things related to dentistry and staying updated 1470 (74.2%) followed by participation into discussion related to dentistry 1170 (59.1%). Dentists younger than 45 years (p=0.002), dentists with practice of less than 10 years (p<0.001), dentists with specialty practice (p<0.001) and dentists having practice website (p<0.001) were more likely to use social media in their dental practice.

Conclusion: Dental practitioners are actively incorporating social media in their practice and non-users also showed interest in incorporating social media into their practice in near future albeit some of them were lacking in the knowledge of the same.

Keywords

Cell phone, Dental practice management, Health services, Digital technology, Marketing, Social marketing, Social medium

Social media has brought tremendous revolution in each and every sector of the world, including healthcare sector and dentistry is no exception to it. Social media includes networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, WhatsApp, LinkedIn, etc. which provide a platform to train and educate healthcare professionals (HCPs), to develop a professional network, to help HCPs educate and communicate with patients and ultimately to improve the quality of care (1),(2). The rise of social media in healthcare has changed the way of interaction of healthcare professionals with their patients and to deliver different types of health care services. No doubt, dental practitioners might be benefiting with the use of social media in many ways but if not carefully used, the dangers these technologies pose to HCPs are formidable (1). Certain limitations include poor quality and lack of reliability of information, HCP credentialing and licensure, ethical issues such as safety and security of patient information, etc (1),(3). Hence, this may be responsible for various challenges as HCPs including dental professionals have to maintain an established image, ethical principles and procedures (4).

The use of social media is prevalent across all ages and professions and is pervasive worldwide (5). According to the statistics portal in India, as of January 2022, about 33.4% of Indian population uses social media (5). India nearly having 2.7 lakh registered dentists, is one of the largest hubs for dental sciences in Asia (6). Many studies have evaluated social media use among dentists across the globe (7),(8),(9); however, few studies have been conducted in India evaluating the use of social media in dental practice by Indian dentists (10),(11). Previous studies have reported a variable use of social media by dentists with percentages ranging from 63% to 90% for professional and personal use (10),(11).

This shows that considerable number of dentists are using social media in their dental practice and its popularity among dental professional is increasing. However, many aspects of dental practice/practice management such as clinical experience of dentist, type of practice, patient record keeping system, reasons for not using social media, etc. have not been explored in previously conducted studies in India. Hence, this study aimed to explore the use of social media in dental practice among Indian dentists.

Material and Methods

This cross-sectional survey was conducted on a convenient sample of Indian Dental Association (IDA) members running a private dental clinic in India since at-least a year. Ethical clearance for the present study was obtained from Institutional Ethical Committee of a Bharati Vidyapeeth (Deemed to be University) Dental College and Hospital, Pune (ECR/328/Inst/MH/2016). A list of 36218 dental practitioners registered with Indian Dental Association was procured from IDA Head office located in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.The study was conducted over a period of six months from October 2019 to March 2020.

Inclusion criteria: Those dental practitioners running a private dental clinic in India since at least one year and returned the fully filled questionnaire were included in the study.

Exclusion criteria: Those dental practitioners with clinical practice of less than one year or submitted incomplete responses were excluded from the study.

Questionnaire

The questionnaire was adapted from a previously conducted study (7). A questionnaire consisting of 16 items related to the use of social media in dental practice was developed by the authors by adapting the questions from previous studies (7),(11) and adding few new questions and was subjected to a panel of four senior dental practitioners for review and content validation.Details of Content Validity Index (CVI): Scale-CVI/Ave (based on Item-CVI): 0.92; Scale-CVI/Ave (based on proportion relevance): 0.93; Scale-CVI/UA: 0.88]. Necessary modifications were done as per suggestions and one item related to type of specialty practice was removed from the questionnaire. Final questionnaire consisting of 15 items was subjected to assess internal consistency. The value of Cronbach’s alpha coefficient (internal consistency reliability) was 0.82 which was considered as good. The questionnaire was then administered to another group of five dentists on two different occasions to check test-retest reliability. The kappa coefficient value obtained was 0.87 which shows strong agreement between the responses.

First section: of the questionnaire was on demographic details of the participants which included their age, gender, type and number of years of practice.

Second section: of the questionnaire consisted of items about the use of social media in dental practice and one open ended question on the topic.

An email with a link to the survey questionnaire was sent to all the dental practitioners registered with IDA. Two weeks later, they were again reminded through an email to complete the survey. One week after that, they were again sent final reminder mails to complete the survey. Responses to the survey were collected through an Online Survey Administration App (Google Forms).

Statistical Analysis

Data was anonymized and imported in statistical software Statistical Package for Social Sciences(SPSS) version 20.0 for data analysis. Level of significance was kept at 5%. Data was presented using descriptive statistics (frequency distribution) and comparisons were made using chi-square test.

Results

A total of 3319 responses were obtained out of which 139 responses were excluded because of less than one year of practice experience and incompleteness of dental responses. Total, 3180 responses were included in the study. Majority of the respondents (85.8%) were less than 45 years of age. Out of 3180 respondents, 64.2% of the dentists were practicing for less than 10 years and only 23.6% of the respondents were specialty practitioners. Only 17.1% of the practices were having a website and 46.1% of the practices were still using traditional paper record system. Only 6.6% of the practices were using totally digital record system. Social media use in dental practice was reported by 62.3% of the respondents (Table/Fig 1).

The use of social media was significantly more among dentists who were less than 45 years of age than the dentists aged 45 years and above (p=0.002). Practices with completely digital (71.4%) or partially digital (74%) record system were most likely to use social media than practices that used traditional paper system (49%) (p<0.001). A total of 68.4% of the respondents who were having their practice website were using social media in their practice as compared to 60.9% of those who were not having their practice website (p<0.001). Specialty practitioners (68%) were more likely to use social media than general practitioners (60.5%) (p<0.001). Those who were practicing for less than 10 years (69.1%) were more likely to use social media than those practicing for more than 10 years (50%) (p<0.001) (Table/Fig 2).

Of the 62.3% (n=1980) of practices who reported use of social media within their practice, WhatsApp (n=1650; 83.3%) was the most popular social media site followed by Facebook (n=1500; 75.8%) and YouTube & Instagram (n=480; 24.2% each). Regarding use of social media for personal use, WhatsApp (n=2820; 88.7%) was the most commonly used social media application followed by Facebook (n=2370; 74.5%), YouTube (n=1080; 34.0%) & Instagram (n=870; 27.4%) (Table/Fig 3).

The most common reasons for using social media were learning new things related to dental practice (74.2%), participating in discussions related to dentistry (59.1%), marketing (57.6%) and to have better online presence (48.5%). Some respondents also indicated that they use social media to communicate with existing patients (47%) (Table/Fig 4). Some of the reasons for not using social media listed were not believing in advertising and promotions (32.5%), lack of knowledge (25%) and time constraint (25%) (Table/Fig 4).

Regarding the success of social media in dental practice, 61.2% (n=1230) reported it to be successful, while 35.8% (n=720) were unsure about the success and 3% (n=60) felt it unsuccessful. Around 60% of respondents (n=720) indicated that they were planning to incorporate social media in their practice in near future and 40% of the respondents (n=480) had no plan to use or had no interest in incorporating social media into their practice. Among the respondent that showed positive attitude towards social media use in future, 35% respondent (n=420) reported that they are planning to incorporate social media into their practice in the future and 25% respondents (n=300) reported that they were thinking about incorporating social media into my practice, but they did not know how to incorporate it.

The last question on the survey was an open ended question asking participant’s opinion about use of social media in dental practice. Some of the comments are presented in (Table/Fig 5). Most of the positive comments were related to upgradation in knowledge by the use of social media, reaching a larger number of people and marketing purpose.

Discussion

In the recent years, social media has become omnipresent. It has also penetrated dental practice to a larger extent. The use of the internet, especially social media in some or other form has almost become a standard for a proper functioning of dental practice. Dentists are using social media not only for upgradation of their knowledge and uplifting the dental practice and quality of care, but also to publicize their practice and communicate with their patients (7),(8),(9).

Given the increasing popularity of various social media applications, the current study was planned with an aim to obtain a snapshot about the use of social media by Indian dental practitioners within their practice.

The results of the study clearly suggest that dental practitioners are engaging social media (62.3%) in their clinical practice. Usage of social media into dental practice is high among Indian dentists than dentists of United States of America (USA) (51%) and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (52%) (7),(9). Another study in Saudi Arabia reported that 41% dentist use social media (12). The results of the present study are in accordance with previous Indian study which showed 64.8% of dental faculty using social media in their profession (11). WhatsApp was the most commonly reported social media platform among Indian dentists in the present study. This could be attributed to the fact that WhatsApp is the most commonly used social media messenger application in India as reported which facilitates the dentists to target a higher number of people (13). A study conducted by Al-Khalifa KS et al. in Saudi Arabia also reported WhatsApp as the most commonly reported social media tool used by the dentists (96.5% of dentists aged <35 years and 94.8% of the dentists aged ≥35 years) (14); however other studies conducted mentioned Facebook being the most commonly used platform (7),(8),(11),(15),(16). In two studies conducted in Saudi Arabia, dentists used Instagram most commonly for dental practice promotion, and also regarded as the most powerful platform (12),(17). A survey on dental undergraduate students of Malaysia and Finland revealed that more than 90% and 70% students use social media platforms WhatsApp and Instagram respectively (18).

In the present study, it was found that younger age dental practitioners (less than 45 years of age) were engaging social media more into their practice more than their elder counterparts which is similar to a study conducted on United States (US) dental practitioners and Malaysian dental practitioners (7),(19). This can be attributed to the fact that young generation is more tech savvy and more engaged in social media activities (20). Learning new things related to dentistry (74.2%) and participating in dental discussions (59.1%) on social media platforms were the main reasons for using social media followed by social media as a marketing tool for dental practice (57.6%). A study conducted in Riyadh reported 43% of the dentists using social media for education and 62% of the dentists using social media as a marketing tool (9). Two studies conducted in Saudi Arabia reported that 42% and 41% of dentists used social media platforms for education purpose (12),(17). However, the most common reason for using social media in dental practice reported by US dental practitioners was marketing (91%) and communicating with existing or prospective patients (73%) (7). Since most of the respondents in the present study were from the younger age group, who are more eager for updating their knowledge and quality of care using social media, this might explain the difference from the study conducted in US where age groups were older. The results of the success of social media in dental practice in the present study differ from a previous study conducted in US where only 38% felt it was successful and around 55% were not sure about the success (7). The main reasons for not opting to social media in dental practice in the present study was lack of belief in advertising and promotion followed by time constraint and lack of knowledge. These results are similar to a study conducted on dentists in South Africa (15). In a study conducted in South Africa, the main reason for not opting for social media marketing was time constraint (n=170; 65.4%), lack of knowledge (n=140; 53.6%) and security concerns (n=124; 47.9%) (15). In contrast to this observation, 89.4% dentists in another study conducted in Saudi Arabia reported that they promote through social media to attract patients (21). Another study conducted in Saudi Arabia reported that education was the main purpose among dentists for utilization of social media (17). A study conducted among Orthodontists in USA reported no time as the main reason (63%) followed by privacy concerns (43%) (16). In a study conducted in Malaysia, the main reason for not using social media marketing in dental practice was time constraint (n=39; 24.9%) and lack of knowledge (n=33; 20.9%) (19).

Along with uncertainty about use of social media comes the uncertainty of security and ethical perspective of social media use which is evident from few of the comments on social media. A study among dentists of Saudi Arabia revealed a shocking fact that more than 86% of the participants posted their cases containing patients' photographs without the patients' verbal or written informed consent (12). This calls for the education among the professionals about the use of social media in dental practice to address concerns about appropriate use both ethically and professionally without tarnishing one’s image (7). The content posted on social media should be assessed for credibility before being implemented into practice. Social media sites should be used wisely and prudently that will result in professional development and advancement as well as promote individual and public health. It is the responsibility of the professional organisations and publications to help set the standards and criteria for the use of social media in our practice (7). Such guidelines on the use of social media in healthcare have been issued by various organizations in US (1).

Limitation(s)

Few of the inherent limitations of the study were low response rate (8.8%) and electronic nature of the survey. While the response rate was low, general demographics of the respondents were similar to the demographics of dentists in India. The survey was conducted through an electronic survey platform and those who routinely use social media in their practice may be more prone to respond to an electronic survey distributed through online mail system than those who do not use social media.

Conclusion

It can be seen that social media is used in dental practice in India to varying degrees depending upon various factors related to dental practice. It is mostly utilized by younger practitioners mainly for learning purpose. Many of the non-users indicated their willingness to use social media in the near future which shows that the use of social media in dentistry in India will continue to grow in the coming years. Social media, if used wisely can prove to be a boon for healthcare practitioners and can be a key tool in enhancing education.

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DOI and Others

DOI: 10.7860/JCDR/2022/56404.16533

Date of Submission: Mar 16, 2022
Date of Peer Review: Apr 07, 2022
Date of Acceptance: May 10, 2022
Date of Publishing: Jun 01, 2022

AUTHOR DECLARATION:
• Financial or Other Competing Interests: None
• Was Ethics Committee Approval obtained for this study? Yes
• Was informed consent obtained from the subjects involved in the study? Yes
• For any images presented appropriate consent has been obtained from the subjects. NA

PLAGIARISM CHECKING METHODS:
• Plagiarism X-checker: Mar 23, 2022
• Manual Googling: May 03, 2022
• iThenticate Software: May 07, 2022 (18%)

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