Effectiveness of Randomized Controlled Field Trial Instructing Parents to Supervise Children on Tooth Brushing Skills and Oral Hygiene

The Open Dentistry Journal 28 Feb 2019 RESEARCH ARTICLE DOI: 10.2174/1874210601913010076



Educating parents on supervision of tooth brushing ensures effective plaque removal, healthy gums and attainment of tooth brushing skills.


To evaluate the effect of educating parents about children’s tooth brushing supervision on their own knowledge and act of supervision, their children’s tooth brushing skills, plaque score and gingival health.


Two arms cluster randomized controlled field trial among 8-9 years primary school pupils and their parents. The intervention trial was an educational leaflet on step by step supervision of children during tooth brushing. The outcomes were; improved tooth brushing skills, oral hygiene status and gingival health, parental awareness and supervision of children’s tooth brushing. Data processing and statistical analysis was done using SPSS version 20.0. Frequency distribution for proportions, cross tabulations with Chi-square and adjusted binary logistic regression were performed.


A total of 237 pupils were followed to completion of the study. The odds of parents being aware and supervising children during tooth brushing were higher in the intervention group at follow-up 4.5 (1.5, 13.4) and 2.4 (1.3, 4.5) respectively. The unadjusted odds for good oral hygiene following intervention was 3.1 (1.4, 6.9) and that of tooth brushing skills 61.8 (7.7, 498.6). On adjusting with parental awareness and supervision of children during tooth brushing, odds of having tooth brushing skills increased to 88.2 (9.2, 847.4).


Providing education to parents on children tooth brushing supervision effectively improved children’s tooth brushing skills, plaque score and gingival health emanating from awareness and act of supervision improvements revealed on their part.

Key words: Supervised tooth brushing, Tooth brushing skills, Oral hygiene, Gingival health, Parental instructions, Parental awareness.
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