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EPIDEMIOLOGICAL STUDY Table of Contents   
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 29  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 378-390
Assessment of oral health status and associated lifestyle factors among Malaysian Fishermen in Teluk Bahang, Penang: An analytical cross-sectional study


Department of Public Health Medicine, Penang Medical College, George Town, Penang, Malaysia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Surajudeen Abiola Abdulrahman
Department of Public Health Medicine, Penang Medical College, 10450 George Town, Penang
Malaysia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ijdr.IJDR_545_17

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Background: Given background sparsity of country-specific literature evidence, and the pervasive unhealthy lifestyle habits such as tobacco, alcohol use, and high sugar consumption among fishermen, the aim of this study was to assess the oral health status and associated lifestyle factors among Malaysian fishermen in Teluk Bahang, Penang. Subjects and Methods: In an analytical cross-sectional design, we used simple random sampling technique to select 242 multiracial Malaysian male fishermen aged between 18 and 75 years from five fishing villages located at Gurney Drive, Tanjong Tokong, Tanjong Bungah, Batu Ferringhi, and Teluk Bahang to participate in this study. During four consecutive weekends in January 2017, we conducted face-to-face interviews with participants using a pre-validated, interviewer-administered WHO oral health questionnaire. We categorized participants as having “good” or “poor” oral health based on a mean cutoff score of 14. Multivariate regression models were fitted to assess the oral health status and associated lifestyle factors among the study population, using SPSS version 22. Results: We achieved a response rate of 97.6%. Overall, the prevalence of poor oral health in this study was 47.5%. “Income” (RM/month), “type of fishing,” “additional occupation,” “age” (years), “frequency of pies, buns consumed,” and “frequency of sweets, soft drinks consumed” were significant predictors of oral health status among the fishermen. Conclusion: Poor oral health is relatively highly prevalent among the fishermen in our study. The oral health status of fishermen in Teluk Bahang was consistent with the national average and significantly associated with their sociodemographic and lifestyle factors. Targeted interventions are required to arrest and reverse this trend.


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