Instability of self-esteem, self-confidence, self-liking, self-control, self-competence and perfectionism: associations with oral health status and oral health-related behaviours.Int J Dent Hyg. 2012 Feb; 10(1):22-9.IJ
Our aim was to explore whether instability of self-esteem, self-confidence, self-liking, self-control, self-competence and perfectionism each has an independent contribution to the self-rated oral health and oral health-related behaviours.
MATERIAL AND METHODS
A cross-sectional study design was used. Data were collected between November 2008 and May 2009. The sample consisted of 205 Romanian adults (mean age: 29.84 years; 65.2% women; 40% married) who were a random population drawn consecutively from the registry file of two private dental practices in the Iasi area. The questionnaire included information about demographic, psychological, self-reported oral health and oral health-related behaviour items.
The comparison of participants who never flossed their teeth with those who flossed everyday showed statistically significant lower levels of self-confidence (P < 0.05), self-liking (P = 0.001), self-competence (P < 0.0001), self-control (P < 0.05) and Perfectionism Scores (P < 0.05). Significant higher levels of self-competence were scored in persons who used weekly mouthrinses comparing with never users (P = 0.012). Also patients who visited the dentist mainly when treatment is needed or when pain presented lower levels of self-competence and self-control comparing with those who visited the dentist mainly for check-up or for tooth cleaning and scaling (P < 0.05). Oral health behaviours (toothbrushing and mouthrinse frequencies) were predicted by multiple regression analyses using sociodemographic (age, gender), self-competence and perfectionism variables.
Our study showed that instability of self-esteem, self-confidence, self-competence, self-liking, self-control and perfectionism was associated not only with self-rated dental health but also with oral health behaviours. Understanding the psychological factors associated with oral hygiene can further the development and improvement in therapeutic strategies to be used in oral health-improving programs, as well as of programs aimed at prevention and education.