Aim: To evaluate the determinants of Iranian dentists’ behaviour regarding infection control (IC).
Design: A cross-sectional questionnaire survey.
Setting: Iranian general dental practitioners (GDP) participating in a national dental congress.
Methods: The GDPs filled in a self-administered questionnaire containing questions regarding their attitudes towards and their behaviour on several aspects of IC. Background factors included GDP’s year of birth, gender, and work-related factors. Statistical evaluation employed the Chi-square test, Cronbach alpha, and regression analysis.
Results: In total, 479 GDPs returned the questionnaire. Their mean age was 38.6 years (SD = 9.4) and 53% were men. The vast majority of the GDPs had positive attitudes towards the inquired after IC criteria with no statistical difference based on the GDP’s background characteristics. Of all respondents, >70% reported that they inform the laboratory about the infection status of the sent items, disinfect impressions before sending to the laboratory, and wash patients’ mouths before working with high-speed or ultrasonic devices. Adherence to all the studied IC criteria was reported by 10% of the respondents; more frequently by younger GDPs and those with fewer experience years (P < 0.05).
Conclusion: Greater emphasis on infection control programmes in dentists’ education is called for especially in continuing education.