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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 327-329

Can social media infographics create dental health awareness?

1 Department of Public Health Dentistry, Bharti Vidyapeeth Dental College and Hospital, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
2 Department of Microbiology, Bharti Vidyapeeth Dental College and Hospital, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Date of Submission11-Oct-2022
Date of Acceptance01-Nov-2022
Date of Web Publication12-Feb-2023

Correspondence Address:
More Saudamini
Department of Public Health Dentistry, Bharti Vidyapeeth Dental College and Hospital, Sector 7, CBD Belapur, Navi Mumbai - 400 614, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jdrr.jdrr_157_22

Rights and Permissions

Social media is a double-edged sword! The choice remains in the user as to whether they use it for a mere source of entertainment or to receive beneficial information. However, then, the credibility of the content given out plays a pivotal role. In such a scenario, what can make Gen Z benefit? Educated minds can bridge this gap by giving out reliable scientific data. Maintenance of oral hygiene is one such common yet neglected routine. The efficiency of social media in generating awareness about oral hygiene is assessed in the current pilot study, using an online questionnaire-based survey. The results showed that the median of scores of individuals knowledge before and after showing the infographic were 3.5 and 6.0, respectively (P = 0.05). Thus, suggesting social media to be an effective oral health awareness-creating tool.

Keywords: Dental awareness, infograpics, oral health, oral hygiene, social media

How to cite this article:
Saudamini M, Minakshi B, Akankshi B, Rajdeep R. Can social media infographics create dental health awareness?. J Dent Res Rev 2022;9:327-9

How to cite this URL:
Saudamini M, Minakshi B, Akankshi B, Rajdeep R. Can social media infographics create dental health awareness?. J Dent Res Rev [serial online] 2022 [cited 2023 Apr 1];9:327-9. Available from: https://www.jdrr.org/text.asp?2022/9/4/327/369585

  Introduction Top

Technology has made a resounding effect in generations starting from millennials to Gen Z and so on. With this change in dynamics, the way current generations process information has also evolved from their predecessors. Social media, an offspring that thrives on engagement, has consequently advanced toward a totally new direction. When we look at the timeline, starting as leisurely entertainment, social media has integrated into every aspect of the lives of this generation as if within a blink of time. The anonymity of a user while voicing their primary concern has been one of the key factors in the popularity of these platforms.

According to research done by market analysts in 2021, Internet users in India are estimated to be over 560 million, which is only second to China.[1] Another statistic states that an average Indian spends around 2.36 h daily on social media. By 2022, the social media users have scaled to around 467 million which is wholly because of the deep roots of Internet connectivity.[2] Children, adolescents, and adults alike are frequently engaged by social media content, which has a significant influence in shaping habits and behavior.[3]

Often neglected, oral health problems are a common plight to mankind and one does not turn up to a dentist unless pain is experienced or the condition is severe. In the same scenario, social media platforms through their blogs, infographics, videos, podcasts, and so on are actively seeked for tips and remedies.[4],[5] Social media platforms, hence with their universal reach have been actively used to spread oral health information. This deduction brought us to our pilot study which was conducted to assess the efficiency of social media infographics in generating awareness of oral hygiene among young adults.

  Methodology Top

An online survey, based on a questionnaire, was used to evaluate the effect of infographic social media content in enhancing a person's oral health awareness. The questionnaire was circulated among 80 individuals out of which 58 responses were obtained for the study. The study participants were first-year undergraduate students of the age group between 18 and 22 years. These subjects were included because their perception of the information will be similar to a population without any professional dental knowledge. Individuals excluded from the study were those with prior history of dental treatment, those previously advised on proper brushing techniques, and those who did not consent to the study.

The survey form was divided into three sections. The first section consisted of seven questions related to oral health and hygiene. They were, "How many times should you brush in a day?," "How do you hold the brush against your teeth?," "What is the minimum time that should be given for brushing?," "What should be the type of your tooth brushing motions?," "What ingredient should be looked for in your toothpaste?," "How frequently should toothbrushes be changed?," and "With what action is the tongue cleaned?." The second section displayed an infographic poster [Figure 1], mimicking social media posts with directions and information answering the questions asked in the previous section. Finally, the third section of the form repeated the same seven questions of the first section. The survey link was sent to the selected participants through WhatsApp. After receiving the responses the data was analysed using IBM SPSS Software version 20. (Statistical Package for Social Sciences, Armonk, NY, USA, IBM Corp.). Data were expressed as descriptive statistics. Wilcoxon signed-rank test was applied.
Figure 1: Infographic depicting brushing technique and oral hygiene maintenance tips

Click here to view

  Results Top

The response rate of the survey was 73%. After receiving 58 responses, the data were analyzed in two instances: before the test and after the test. The results obtained showed that the median of scores of individuals before the test was 3.5 whereas the median of scores after the test was 6.0 with a P = 0.05 [Figure 2]. The results showed that the knowledge of participants was significantly higher after taking the test and 42 respondents obtained higher scores after observing the infographic. The results were an indication of the preference of individuals toward infographics and social media.
Figure 2: Before and after comparison of test scores

Click here to view

  Discussion Top

The rationale of the study was to comprehend the effectiveness of infographics and social media tools in influencing the oral health knowledge of individuals. El Tantawi et al. in their research stated that 57.5% of the study population preferred using social media to obtain oral health information.[3] Almaiman et al. surveyed Twitter users to perceive that more than two-thirds i.e., 67.7% (n = 1796), of the population seeked oral health information in Arabic online platforms.[4] Whereas Subburaman et al. in their research compared the Simplified Oral Hygiene Index, knowledge, attitude, and practice, and the modified gingival index of participants before and after the test, to understand the effectiveness of social media-based oral health education programs.[5]

The strength of the current study was that the individual approach created a good participation rapport. WhatsApp and Google Forms were secured platforms for the exchange of information. The use of infographics mimicked social media posts seen regularly by the said generation and created a stimulatory effect. The limitation was that the short-term results could not evaluate the change in actual oral hygiene of the participant, but this study opens the prospect of long-term research on the same population.

Social media, an offspring of cyberspace, can change an individual's perception toward oral hygiene and dentistry altogether. With the popular demand of trends, educated hygiene behavior, affinity to e-professionalism, and even surge toward esthetics have risen.[4],[5] Hence, social media can thrive as a medium of information between patients and dental health-care professionals, amplifying the reach of oral health care through the masses.[5]

Financial support and sponsorship


Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

  References Top

Internet Usage in India-Statistics and Amp; Facts | Statista; 2021. Available from: https://www.statista.com/topics/2157/internet-usage-in-india/. [Last accessed on 2022 Jun 26].  Back to cited text no. 1
India Social Media Statistics 2022: Most Used Top Platforms. The Global Statistics; 21 June, 2022. Available from: https://www.theglobalstatistics.com/india-social-media-statistics/. [Last accessed on 2022 Jun 29].  Back to cited text no. 2
El Tantawi M, Bakhurji E, Al-Ansari A, AlSubaie A, Al Subaie HA, AlAli A. Indicators of adolescents' preference to receive oral health information using social media. Acta Odontol Scand 2019;77:213-8.  Back to cited text no. 3
Almaiman S, Bahkali S, Alabdulatif N, Bahkaly A, Al-Surimi K, Househ M. Promoting oral health using social media platforms: Seeking Arabic Online Oral Health Related Information (OHRI). Stud Health Technol Inform 2016;226:283-6.  Back to cited text no. 4
Subburaman N, Parangimalai DM, Iyer K, Sukumaran A. Effectiveness of social media based oral health promotion programme among 18-20 year old city college students – A comparative study. Indian J Dent Res 2021;32:467-71.  Back to cited text no. 5
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  [Figure 1], [Figure 2]


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