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New oral health literacy instrument for public health: development and pilot testing

Authors

  • Mohammad M. Naghibi Sistani,

    1. Department of Community Oral Health, School of Dentistry, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
    2. Department of Oral Public Health, Institute of Dentistry, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
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  • Ali Montazeri,

    1. Mental Health Research Group, Health Metrics Research Centre, Iranian Institute for Health Sciences Research, Academic Centre for Education Cultural and Research, Tehran, Iran
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  • Reza Yazdani,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Community Oral Health, School of Dentistry, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
    • Correspondence

      Dr R. Yazdani, Community Oral Health Department, School of Dentistry, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, P.O. Box 1439955991, Tehran, Iran.

      Tel: +98-21-8801-5960

      Fax: +98-21-8801-5961

      Email: ryazdani@sina.tums.ac.ir

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  • Heikki Murtomaa

    1. Department of Oral Public Health, Institute of Dentistry, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
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Abstract

Aim

The aim of the present study was to develop a functional oral health literacy (OHL) instrument for adults, including new measures of literacy skills (OHL Adults Questionnaire: OHL-AQ).

Methods

An item pool was provided, and an expert panel evaluated the items by assessing the content validity index and content validity ratio. The reliability analysis, including internal consistency and reproducibility, were examined using Cronbach's alpha coefficient and intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). In addition a known-groups comparison was performed to assess how well the questionnaire discriminates between individuals who differ in education and brushing behavior.

Results

A total of 97 participants were studied. The mean age of the participants was 36.3 (standard deviation [SD] = 12.8) years; 34% had more than 12 years' formal education. Overall, 39.2% of interviewees had inadequate, 16.5% had marginal, and 44.3% had adequate OHL. The internal consistency, as measured by Cronbach's alpha, was found to be 0.72, and the ICC was 0.84. Participants who brushed more frequently had significantly higher OHL scores (= 0.03). The association between OHL scores and years of education was also significant (< 0.001).

Conclusion

The OHL-AQ is a valid and reliable measure of functional OHL, with additional sections for evaluating listening and decision-making skills.

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