To assess the knowledge and practice of Saudi dental hygiene students regarding the use of mouthwashes in clinical practice.
Mouthwashes are chemical plaque control agents which are widely used for the prevention of tooth decay, gaining fresh breath, reducing plaque and calculus formation, and reducing gingival inflammation. Chlorhexidine is considered a gold standard mouthwash because of its substantivity action. Thus, it is very important for dental practitioners to understand the knowledge and practices regarding the use of Chlorhexidine mouthwash
The primary objective of this study was to find dental hygiene students’ knowledge about chlorhexidine mouthwash and its side effects and also identify their practice toward the use of mouthwashes as plaque inhibiting agents.
An online version of a pre-tested and validated questionnaire was used to test the knowledge and practices towards the use of Chlorhexidine mouthwash. Thus, A Cross-sectional questionnaire survey was carried out in Saudi Arabia on dental hygiene students.
A total of 144 filled questionnaires were obtained out of which 88% were male and 12% were female. After converting the scores into percentages, any score <60% was categorized as a poor score, 60-80% as an average score, and >80% as a good score. Dental hygiene students showed an average knowledge about Chlorhexidine mouthwash with a score of 62.27% and also poor practice with a score of 57.98%.
The findings of this cross-sectional study demonstrate that most of the Dental hygiene students in Saudi Arabia have got average knowledge and poor practice about the usage of Chlorhexidine mouthwash.
Being the oral health care providers, it is mandatory for dental hygiene students to have adequate knowledge regarding the usage of mouthwashes. With optimum knowledge, they will be able to deliver the right information to the patients thereby ensuring the proper practice of the same.
Keywords: Chlorhexidine, Mouthwash, Dental hygiene students, Knowledge and practice, Cross-sectional study, Plaque.