RESEARCH ARTICLE


Local Dental Emergencies and Mitigation Strategies Adopted by Private Dental Practitioners of South India during COVID-19 Shelter in Place Warning - Multi-Centric Online Survey



Tina Puthen Purayil1, Kalyana-Chakravarthy Pentapati2, *, Vidya-Saraswathi Muliya1, Srikanth Gadicherla3, Rajasekhar Nutalapati4
1 Department of Conservative Dentistry and Endodontics, Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Manipal, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal, India
2 Department of Public Health Dentistry, Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal, India
3 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal, India
4 Vijay Multispeciality Dental Hospital, Miyapur, Hyderabad, India


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Creative Commons License
© 2021 Purayil et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode). This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Public Health Dentistry, Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Manipal, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal., Karnataka, India; Tel: +91-9916036303,
E-mail: drkalyan81@gmail.com


Abstract

Objective:

To evaluate the common dental emergencies reported to dental practitioners and to compare the mitigation strategies implemented during the Shelter-In-Place (SIP) warning with dental practitioners’ age and sex.

Methods:

We conducted a cross-sectional online survey among the dental practitioners of south India during the period of COVID-19 SIP warning. An initial pool of items was prepared to capture the mitigation strategies in managing local dental emergencies. A structured questionnaire was then prepared in English based on the inputs of four expert dentist panel. Age and sex of the practitioners were also recorded.

Results:

The mean age of the dental practitioners was 37.11(range: 23 - 63) years.Of 159 dental practitioners that responded to survey, 90 were male. Most dental practitioners responded that they were contacted through a phone call (n=140) and WhatsApp messaging (n=108). The common dental emergencies reported were tooth pain (100%), swelling (91.7%), a decayed tooth (81.3%), and gum pain (78.6%). A higher number of male than female dental practitioners had “scheduled the treatment immediately” (OR=3.45; P=0.002) after adjusting for age.

Conclusion:

The most common dental emergencies during COVID-19 SIP were tooth pain, swelling, decayed teeth, and gum pain. Males and older dental practitioners scheduled appointments immediately.

Keywords: COVID-19, Dental practitioners, Dentists, Emergencies, Toothache, Swelling.