The oral hygiene status of institution dwelling orphans in Benin City, Nigeria
Introduction: Orphans like other vulnerable children face a number of challenges including limited or no access to basic health care including oral health care, which is one of their unmet health care needs. Neglected oral health care is associated with the development and progression of periodontal diseases among others.
Objective: To determine the oral hygiene status of institution dwelling orphans.
Materials and Methods: Thirty eight orphans from four orphanages in Benin City, Edo State of Nigeria were clinically examined and their oral hygiene status determined using the simplified oral hygiene index of Greene and Vermillion (OHI-S).
Results: Seventy-three percent of the orphans were found to have fair oral hygiene comprising mostly of those aged 6-13 years. More females were in this category while more males presented with poor oral hygiene status.
Conclusion: More orphans presented with fair oral hygiene that indicated inadequate oral care. There was poor oral health education and limited access to services. There is need for these to be improved as a solution to poor oral health status of these vulnerable children.
Key words: Institution dwelling, oral hygiene, orphans, status