Traumatic dental injuries as reported during school hours in Bergen
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Aims: To identify existing guidelines for managing traumatic dental injuries (TDIs) in the schools of Bergen, to ascertain the frequency of occurrence of such injuries, and to estimate the need for further information among teachers and school administrators.
Material and methods: The study, undertaken among teachers and school administrators of elementary and lower secondary schools in Bergen municipality, was questionnaire-based and included a cross section of staff. The structured short questionnaire included items registering TDIs during 2009, existence of routines or guidelines for managing TDIs, previous relevant training, and request for TDI education or information. The statistical methods included frequency tables and logistic regression analysis.
Results: The response rate was 73%. The incidence proportion of TDIs was measured to 0.74% of children at risk, varying according to children's classes (peak at third class: 1.68% of children in the population). No schools had adequate written guidelines for handling TDIs. Previous education on the subject was scarce. In 20 schools, there was no perceived need for TDI-related education or information. The schools’ routines for TDI reporting, who was in charge of the reporting, acquired TDI education and expressed need for TDI information or education, did not influence the number of reported TDI cases.
Conclusion: This study has produced reliable information that schools in the municipality of Bergen could improve ways of reporting and managing TDIs. As teachers with skills in handling TDIs could help to improve the prognosis for injured teeth, some types of educational intervention in schools should be launched.