Main Article Content
Objective: Presence of teeth in the oral cavity plays a significant role in the maintenance of a good health, self-esteem, healthy personality and self-image. Replacement of lost teeth is essential to effective functions of the oral cavity. There are various options to teeth replacement but most patients are not aware of these options. Therefore, many go about with the embarrassment of incomplete dentition with function deprivation. Hence, this study assessed the knowledge and attitude of patients visiting our dental clinics in Kaduna City towards replacement of lost teeth.
Methods: Structured questionnaires were employed to obtain information from the patients, only patients who have lost teeth were included in the study (with exception of third molars). All patients that completed the questionnaires were examined by a clinician, teeth present and missing teeth were charted. The study was carried out in three Dental Clinics in Kaduna Metropolis. The period of study was from July, 2021 to December 2021. Two hundred and ten questionnaires were retrieved and analyzed for age, sex, reasons for teeth loss, options for teeth replacement and factors impeding replacement.
Results: The total number of participants was 210. Of them, 82 were males and 128 were females. The ratio of male to female is 1: 1.4. The age of the participants ranged from twenty to eighty years (mean age is 56years SD ± 26). Majority were in the age range of 30 – 39 years (n=86, 41.0%). 79.5% of individual were provided with proper information about replacement of teeth whereas 20.5% were not. 82.7% stated financial constraint as impediment to replacing their lost teeth and 17.3% stated lack of awareness. 85.9% were aware of removable dentures, while only 15.5% were aware of dental implants. Collected data were statistically analyzed using chi-squared test at a significance level of p<0.05.
Conclusion: The findings indicated that awareness needs to be increased among our patients on the important functions artificial teeth will play in restoring oral functions such as aesthetics, phonation and mastication. Patients should be encouraged to replace their lost teeth.