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Year : 2005  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 115-120

Parental awareness of emergency management of avulsion of permanent teeth of children in Lagos, Nigeria

Department of Child Dental Health, CMUL, P.M.B.12003, Idi-araba, Lagos, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
O O Sanu
Department of Child Dental Health, CMUL, P.M.B.12003, Idi-araba, Lagos
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES: Traumatic injuries in children and adolescents affecting both the primary and permanent dentitions and their supporting structures are a common problem seen in children. Avulsion of permanent teeth in children resulting from trauma is an emergency in children. The prognosis of avulsed teeth depends on prompt and appropriate treatment, which often relies on lay people such as the children's parents and their schoolteachers who are present at the site of the accident, prior to the initial professional dental contact. Knowledge of parents on the emergency management is thus surveyed. METHOD: A 13- stemmed questionnaire comprising questions on demographic data, attitude and knowledge was distributed to parents who have accompanied their children (patients) to the Orthodontic/Paedodontic Clinics of Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) for treatment over a 12-week period from October- December 2002. RESULT: A total of ninety parents were studied. Over 90% of the parents felt they should seek professional help urgently following an avulsion injury, but their knowledge of transport medium for the tooth was poor. Only 1.1 per cent and 3.3 per cent knew that milk was the medium of choice for washing and transporting an avulsed tooth respectively. 91.1% of parents surveyed had never received advice on what to do in the event of an accident where a permanent tooth was avulsed. CONCLUSION: There is a need for educational campaigns aimed at parents to increase their knowledge of the emergency procedures required when the tooth is avulsed.

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