Psychiatric disorders are known to be a risk factor for the development of different oral health problems especially for dental caries and periodontal diseases. In spite of this fact, no study has been conducted to reveal its magnitude in Ethiopia. Hence, this study was conducted to determine the oral health status of psychiatric patients at Jimma University Specialized Hospital (JUSH), Psychiatric Clinic.
A hospital based cross- sectional study was used from January to May 2011. A total of 240 participants were included in the study. Dental examination was done to measure indices of oral health: decayed, missing, and filled teeth (DMFT) index and community periodontal index (CPI). Oral examination was performed using mirror, probe and explorer by experienced dental doctors. A simple random sampling technique was implemented to collect data. ANOVA test, binary logistic and multinomial logistic regression analyses were done using SPSS 16.0 statistical software.
The mean DMFT score among the psychiatric patients was 1.94±2.12 (mean±SD) with 1.28±1.69, 0.51±1.19 and 0.14±0.48 (mean±SD) for decayed, missed and filled teeth respectively. Only about 24% of the psychiatric patients had a healthy CPI score. Incorrect tooth brushing technique was significantly associated with a DMFT score greater than 2 (AOR = 3.58; 95% CI: 1.65, 7.79). The habit of sweet intake was also associated with dental caries (AOR = 2.91; 95% CI: 1.43, 5.95). Similarly, patients with a smoking habit also demonstrated statistically significant association with dental caries (AOR = 18.98; 95% CI: 5.06, 71.24).
The oral health status of the psychiatric patients was poor. Thus, health education about oral hygiene should be given for psychiatric patients so they can avoid the frequent intake of sweets, smoking and learn correct tooth brushing technique.