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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 671-677

Accidental swallowing of dental objects during pediatric dental care in Thailand

1 Department of Advanced General Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand
2 Dental Section, Thawung Hospital, Lopburi, Thailand
3 Mahidol University International Dental School, Faculty of Dentistry, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand

Correspondence Address:
Pornpoj Fuangtharnthip
Department of Advanced General Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, Mahidol University, 6 Yothi Road, Ratchathewi, Bangkok 10400.
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jispcd.JISPCD_150_21

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Aim: Accidental swallowing of dental objects can occur at any time during dental treatment, especially in child patients. Its severity and sequelae can range from minor to life-threatening. The study aimed to find out the occurrence of accidental swallowing and type of swallowed objects regarding pediatric dental treatment in Thailand. Materials and Methods: A nationwide questionnaire survey was performed among Thai dentists to anonymously report child patients’ accidental swallowing throughout their working experience for up to 10 years. Percentage and frequencies of accidental swallowing in child patients, as well as types of dental objects swallowed, were investigated. Association between factors of the respondents and their experiences was assessed by the logistic regression analysis. Results: Among 408 respondents, 99 respondents [24.26%, 95% confidence interval (CI): 20.10–28.42] had experienced accidental swallowing during pediatric dental treatment. All of them reported ingestion with only one respondent reporting aspiration. Extracted teeth, stainless steel crowns, and rubber cups were top on the list of swallowed items experienced by 11.52%, 8.33%, and 3.92% of respondents, respectively. Dental sharps such as endodontic files and orthodontic wires were reported as well. Dentists with higher educational backgrounds, mostly exposed to more complicated cases, were more likely to experience accidental swallowing (odds ratio of 2.90, 95% CI: 1.61–5.21). Conclusion: Our results indicate that accidental swallowing in child patients appeared to occur more frequently than anticipated. Awareness on patient safety of dental professionals and preventive measures against accidental swallowing when dealing with child patients should be greatly emphasized.

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