Oral hygiene in patients with fixed orthodontics is compromised and new information technologies could become a valuable tool for oral health education. The objective of the study was to determine the effect of an educational intervention via WhatsApp on the oral hygiene of patients with fixed orthodontic appliances. The study sample consisted of 46 patients (18.65 ± 3.21 years old) who started fixed orthodontic treatment. The O’Leary plaque index was performed and a questionnaire was applied to measure the level of knowledge in oral hygiene. Participants were divided into an experimental and control group, by randomization. The experimental group was sent an educational intervention prepared using the Play Ground Version 2.0 tool, via the WhatsApp Messenger version 2.19.153 instant messaging application, and the control group was given routine instructions on oral hygiene. After 6 weeks, the index and questionnaire were evaluated. For data analysis, the concordance correlation coefficient, the Shapiro Wilk test and the Student’s T test for related and independent samples were used. The patients in the experimental group had statistically significant differences in plaque control (p = 0.001) and level of knowledge after the educational intervention (p = 0.016), compared to the control group. The educational intervention via WhatsApp had a positive effect on oral hygiene, with respect to plaque control and the level of knowledge of patients with fixed orthodontics.
KEY WORDS: orthodontics, oral hygiene, mobile application.
How to cite this article
PUYÉN, G. C.; ARMAS, P. J. & ORTIZ, P. M. Effect of an educational intervention via WhatsApp on the oral hygiene of orthodontic patients. Int. J. Odontostomat., 14(4):575-580, 2020.