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Original Article

IJMDC. 2022; 6(2): 286-292

Parental Acceptance, Knowledge, and Awareness Toward Interceptive Orthodontic Treatment in Children in Saudi Arabia: An Online Survey

Khalid Essa Alharbi, Ibrahim Fayadh Alharbi, Shaul Hameed Kolarkodi.


Background: Primary tooth exfoliation and permanent tooth eruption are normal physiological events, and early extraction or loss of a tooth during primary dentition may result in malocclusion in permanent dentition. Parents and guardians have a pivotal role to play in preventing malocclusions in children. The study aimed to assess parental knowledge, awareness, and acceptance toward interceptive orthodontic treatment (IOT) for children in Saudi Arabia.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted using a pretested questionnaire conducted among parents of children aged 6-12 years. The questionnaire had closed-ended items that recorded the acceptance, knowledge, and awareness regarding IOT, and these were then correlated with the participants’ socio-demographic characteristics. Pearson’s chi-square test was used to determine any statistical relationship between socio-demographic factors and acceptance, knowledge, and awareness.
Results: The knowledge level of the parents showed that only 4% had good knowledge and 76.2% had poor knowledge regarding IOT. There was no statistically significant relationship seen between knowledge level and nationalities and the gender of the participants (p < 0.05). Majority of the participants agreed that orthodontic correction in early childhood would improve the child’s facial appearance. Nearly half of the participants had awareness regarding the use of space maintainers. Only one-quarter of the participants were aware of the importance of maintaining primary teeth.
Conclusion: Participants have poor awareness and knowledge regarding interceptive orthodontic treatment. Parents should be educated about the importance of maintaining primary teeth in the development process of permanent dentition.

Key words: Malocclusion, Primary dentition, Space maintainers , Orthodontic, Oral Health Education

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