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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 349-355

Barrier to access and dental care utilization behavior with related independent variables in the elderly population of Saudi Arabia


1 Department of Preventive Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, Jordan University of Science and Technology, Irbid, Jordan; Preventive Dental Science Department, College of Dentistry, King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
2 Preventive Dental Science Department, College of Dentistry, King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Prof. Abed Al-Hadi Hamasha
Preventive Dental Science Department, College of Dentistry, King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, P.O. Box 3660, Riyadh 11426
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jispcd.JISPCD_21_19

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Objectives: The study aimed to evaluate barriers associated with access and utilization of dental services among the elderly population of Saudi Arabia. Materials and Methods: A systematic random sample of 350 elderly people recruited from various gathering places of the elderly including all nursing home residents (n = 73) was included in this study. The data were collected through face-to-face structured interviews related to access and utilization of dental services, and sociodemographic, behavioral, medical, and financial barriers to dental services. Statistical analysis included frequency distributions, chi-squared tests, and regression analysis using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) program. Results: Approximately 37% of the elderly had proper access to and utilization of dental services. Independent variables that affect access and utilization of dental services were low income (odds ratio [OR] = 2.23, confidence interval [CI] = 1.34–3.72), unmarried participants (OR = 3.25, CI = 1.75–6.05), community residents (OR = 5.15, CI = 2.52–10.53), smokers (OR = 1.93, CI = 1.02–3.68), irregular users of toothbrushing (OR = 3.53, CI = 2.09–5.95), no dental insurance (OR = 1.88, CI = 1.06–3.37), and unaffordable price (OR = 2.55, CI = 1.38–4.69) in the bivariate analysis. In logistic regression analysis, the significant variables that were associated with proper access and utilization of dental services were having dental insurance (OR = 2.24, CI = 1.15–3.82), affordable prices (OR = 2.19, CI = 1.21–3.70), brushing regularly (OR = 3.58, CI = 2.01–6.37), higher education (OR = 1.87, CI = 1.10–3.20), and being married (OR = 1.68. CI = 0.97–2.91). Conclusion: Lack of perceived need, no dental insurance, unaffordable price, transportation, and fear from dental treatment were the most common significant barriers to dental services.


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