Development of an Education Intervention for Parents to Improve Oral Health of Children in Vientiane Province, Lao P.D.R.

Souksavanh Vongsa *

Department of Basic Sciences in Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Health Sciences, Laos.

Khamphouvy Chanbounmy

Division of Dental Clinic D, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Health Sciences, Laos.

Phetmany Sihavong

Department of Basic Sciences in Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Health Sciences, Laos.

Soudsakhone Phanpadith

Department of Basic Sciences in Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Health Sciences, Laos.

Somneuk Sangvilay

Department of Basic Sciences in Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Health Sciences, Laos.

Phetlamphay Sidanoumonh

Division of Administration and Academic, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Health Sciences, Laos.

Phonesavanh Soundara

Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Health Sciences, Laos.

Maiboun Simalavong

Faculty of Dentistry, University of Health Sciences, Laos.

Chanthavisao Phanthanalay

Faculty of Dentistry, University of Health Sciences, Laos.

Vilada Chansamouth

Lao-Oxford-Mahosot Hospital-Wellcome Trust Research Unit (LOMWRU), Mahosot Hospital, Laos.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Background: Dental caries is a major problem in young children worldwide, particularly in Southeast Asia. The prevalence of dental caries among preschool children is very high. In addition, parents are playing an important role in the development of caries in children.

Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate dental education intervention for parents to improve oral health of children in Vientiane Province, Lao P.D.R. (Laos).

Methods: This is a cohort study with a follow-up period of 3 months in two kindergartens in Vientiane province. Using modified oral health literacy and behavioral questionnaires to interview the parent or guardian before and after giving the education intervention. The oral health examination of all preschoolers was observed to record the quantity and severity of dental caries.

Results: A total of 218 children aged 3-5 years old in two kindergartens in Vientiane province, 117 (53.70%) were boys and 101 (46.30%) were girls. The prevalence of dental caries was 69.30% and the decayed, missing and filled teeth (dmft) index was 3.88 at baseline, lastly increased to 4.67 in the subsequent examination at 3 months post-intervention. In comparison with the pulpal involvement, ulceration, fistula and abscess (pufa) index was decreasing from 1.56 to 1.31 after intervention. The guardians who participated in the survey were mostly father/mother (90.80%), their average age was 35.79 ( 6.70) years old. There was a significant difference in the level of oral health knowledge, behavior and parental practices after intervention (t = 5.41, 95% CI = 2.10-4.50, p < 0.001).

Conclusion: The findings of this investigation indicate that providing dental education to parents is an important way to improve oral health knowledge, behavior, and parental practices. However, the severity of dental caries in young children remains high. Therefore, it is crucial to implement oral health education and prevention programs in kindergartens.

Keywords: Dental education, intervention, dental caries, preschool children

How to Cite

Vongsa, Souksavanh, Khamphouvy Chanbounmy, Phetmany Sihavong, Soudsakhone Phanpadith, Somneuk Sangvilay, Phetlamphay Sidanoumonh, Phonesavanh Soundara, Maiboun Simalavong, Chanthavisao Phanthanalay, and Vilada Chansamouth. 2024. “R”. Asian Journal of Dental Sciences 7 (1):186-93.


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