Reasons underlying failure to seek early dental treatment among patients presenting in a Nigeria Tertiary Hospital

  • CE Anyanechi
  • BD Saheeb


The objective of this study was to establish the reason(s) why patients suffering from common dental diseases like dental caries and periodontal disease present late in our centre. An open- ended questionnaire was administered to subjects attending the Dental Clinic of the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital for a period of 6 months. Majority of the subjects (n=132, 31.5%) were in their third decade of life and the mean age was 33 ± 4.2 years. The male to female ratio was 1:1.5, and there was no gender difference with respect to age (p=0.374). Majority (n=249, 59.5%) were in the lower socio-economic class. Those who felt the symptoms will resolve on its own (32.8%), trying other medications (23.7%) and financial constraints (10.7%) were the major reasons for presenting late. There is need to strengthen the continuing oral health education programme, and the establishment of more dental clinics in this environment.

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eISSN: 1596-6941