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Self medication for oral health problems in Cameroon.

Agbor, Michael A; Azodo, Clement C.
Int Dent J; 61(4): 204-9, 2011 Aug.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-21851352

OBJECTIVE:

To assess the use of self medication in oral health problems in Cameroon.

METHODS:

This multi-regional cross-sectional survey was conducted in three towns; Bamenda, Yaounde and Buea over a 10 month period. The questionnaire elicited information on demography, oral problem for self medication, substance used for self medication, source of the substance, duration of self medication, reason for self medication, source of advice of the drugs or those products used, opinion about the substance, effect and duration.

RESULTS:

The prevalence of self medication for oral health problems was 67.8% which was significantly associated with age, marital status and location. The most frequently self medicated oral health problem was toothache (54.7%). The majority (64.5%) of the respondents used pharmaceutical products while a minority (7.7%) used dangerous substances such as petrol and vinegar for self medication. Sources of substances of self medication included pharmacy (55.6%), road side vendors (26.1%), native healers (7.8%), mobile drug vendors in buses (5.3%), and others (5.3%). The choice of substances used for self medication was mostly guided by the advice from relatives.

CONCLUSION:

The majority of the respondents self-medicated for oral health problems. Unmarried, urban residents, aged 21-30 years reported significantly increased self-medication for oral health problems. Evidently dangerous substances were utilised for self-medication in this study, necessitating awareness and other forms of intervention.
Selo DaSilva