Comparison of Dental Flossing and Oral Health Status among Dental Students and High School Students

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Background: Along with brushing, using dental floss is an important part of tooth cleaning. This adjunctive method helps remove the bacterial plaque mainly from the interdental area and from the gingival sulcus.

The aim of the study was to compare the correct and incorrect methods of using dental floss among students from different high schools and students from the Faculty of Dentistry.

Material and methods: A total number of 96 young adults with a mean age of 21 years (range 18–25 years) were admitted in the study, being divided into three groups: students from Baia Mare (Group 1), students from Odorheiu Secuiesc (Group 2), and the control group consisted of students from the Faculty of Dental Medicine from Tîrgu Mureș (Group 3). The students were invited to complete a questionnaire regarding the use of dental floss. In the second part of the study, a total number of 30 students (10 students from each group) were examined using the Williams periodontal probe, a dental mirror, and a dental probe, and the following parameters were recorded: the papilla bleeding index (PBI), the tartar index (TI), and the DMF-S index.

Results: The lowest gingival bleeding during brushing was observed in Group 3 (p = 0.0070). The majority of people who regularly use dental floss were in Group 3 (p <0.0001). There were no significant differences between groups regarding gender in the use of dental floss: Group 1 (p >0.9999), Group 2 (p = 0.3358), and Group 3 (p = 0.3303).

Conclusions: Regarding the used periodontal indices (TI, PBI), the highest peak was achieved by students from Group 2, and the lowest values were recorded among students from Group 3. The DMF-S index was the highest among students from Group 1 and lowest among students from Group 3.

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