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Edentulous patients’ knowledge of dental hygiene and care of prostheses


Luciano de Castellucci Barbosa, Department of Dentistry Clinic, Federal University of Bahia, Rua Altino Serbeto Barros, 173/604, Itaigara CEP 41825-010, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil.
Tel: (55 + 71) 3355 0081
Fax: (55 + 71) 3355 0081


Objective:  The aim of this study was to analyse denture users’ oral care habits with regard to the use of their prostheses.

Background:  Rehabilitative treatment is only successful when patients are motivated and aware of correct prosthesis use and hygiene.

Materials and methods:  Questionnaires were distributed to 150 complete denture users at the Federal University of Bahia School of Dentistry, the Esmeralda Natividade Health Center, the Bahian Science Development Foundation and a Salvador nursing home. The questionnaire included information on gender, age, length of prosthesis use, cleaning methods and materials, etc. The data were analysed using EpiInfo version 6 software. The chi-squared test was used for statistical analysis, with a significance level of 5%.

Results:  Questionnaire results showed that 78% of the subjects, with an average age of 67.3 years, had used the same complete denture for over 5 years. 64% slept with their prostheses and 44% removed them from the mouth only for cleaning. None of the patients interviewed knew anything about brushes designed specifically for complete dentures. 37.3% had a restricted diet and 44% believed that a complete denture would last for more than 10 years.

Conclusion:  Within the limitations of this study, it was concluded that the edentulous patients surveyed had limited awareness of prosthetic hygiene and long-term oral care despite extended periods of denture use.