Nigerian Journal of Health and Biomedical Sciences

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Gum bleeding as a symptom of disease: are Nigerian mothers aware?

OO Sofola, OO Orenua


Aim: to assess the perception of Nigerian mothers on causes of gum bleeding in children.

Method: A cross-sectional survey of all willing mothers attending the maternal and child health clinics of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital and two randomly selected primary health care clinics in a local Government area of Lagos state.

Result: 464 mothers were involved in the study. Of these, 259(55.8%) had received some form of oral health education. 187(39.7%) did not know the probable causes of gum bleeding and of the remaining 277, only 61(13.1%) and 42 (9.1%) ascribed the cause to poor oral hygiene and bacteria respectively. Majority of them had wrong perceptions about gum bleeding. Their perception was significantly associated with their level of education and a history of previous dental visit. In conclusion, oral health education in Nigeria should be structured so it addresses diseases of priority. There should be integration of primary oral health care in other health care programmes for a wider reach of the population.

Keywords: gum bleeding, mothers, awareness

Nigerian Journal of Health and Biomedical Sciences Vol. 5(1) 2006: 89-92
AJOL African Journals Online